HOMESTEAD, FLA. (WSVN) - Two students have been arrested, Thursday, suspected of bringing a gun to South Dade Senior High School, which is located in Homestead.
According to school board officials, a school employee found an unspent bullet on the ground in his classroom. He then notified school administrators who contacted Miami-Dade Schools Police.
Officials conducted a search of the campus and found an unloaded weapon inside a jacket that had been thrown in a trash bin.
After further investigation, police said that two students were in possession of that firearm, earlier in the day.
Both students, one being identified as 18-year-old James Martin Jr., have since been arrested and charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds.
The school was on lockdown for two hours while police conducted their investigation.
“I didn’t really see much other than the security guard picking up the jacket and taking the kid that had the gun,” said student Christian Montalvo. “I heard that the teacher found the bullet, and he called the security guards and they came, searched the bathroom.”
Parents were shocked and distressed upon hearing the news. One even broke into tears. “You hear it all the time but when it hits close to home like this, it’s very shocking,” said Rick Riera.
7News spoke to Meco Hawkins, the mother of Martin Jr. She said the police have the wrong person.
Hawkins believes that since her son was due to appear in court for an unrelated reason on Friday, he was wrongly blamed by school officials for bringing the gun.
“I just got off the phone with Mr. Miller, assistant principal,” said Hawkins. “He stated that a bullet was found on the floor. A gun was found in somebody else’s jacket. I feel like they just put two and two together, and my son was already going to court tomorrow, so they just arrest my son, and that’s not right.”
Both Martin Jr. and the other student, who is also at least 18 years old, are scheduled to make court appearances, Friday.
This is the second school disruption this week for South Dade. It was also the subject of a social media threat Monday. However, officials noted, the two incidents are not related.
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