FORT LAUDERDALE, FLA. (WSVN) - Bodycam video released to 7News shows the moment the principal of Walker Elementary School and an officer talked to a 10-year-old student who had a gun in his backpack.
Video from Oct. 6 showed the moment a Fort Lauderdale Police officer made contact with the child.
“Hey buddy,” the officer could be heard saying.
“Hi,” the child replied.
“What’s in your bag, buddy?” the officer asked.
“I don’t know,” the student replied.
“Nine mill,” the officer said as he opened the backpack.
Just after 8 a.m., parents were still dropping their children off at school when police got the call.
Bodycam video shows the officer responding to the campus as the campus guardian tells him the gun is not loaded.
“Check it out, so I removed the magazine from it, there’s no bullets in it,” the campus guardian can be heard saying.
Police said the child was showing the gun to friends and one of them did exactly what they’re supposed to do and told an adult.
“There was this little boy, but he said that a 10-year-old had a gun in his bookbag. I was scared,” said student Noah Higgins.
The principal of the school said they made contact with the student immediately.
“Intercepted him before he got to the cafeteria, checked his bag. It would appear that would be the case,” the principal could be heard telling the officer.
The campus guardian made the 911 call.
“Please be advised I located a kid who brought a gun to school,” he said to the 911 operator.
It was a terrible mistake, but investigators do not believe the child had any intent to harm anyone.
“There is a possibility you may not be coming back to this school ever again,” the principal told the child.
Later that day, just as the child’s grandfather started to answer questions from the media, another family member pulled him away.
“We don’t answer more questions to the media. Come on,” she said.
It remains unclear where the child got the gun.
“Going back to class is not an option today, so asking is not going to change anything,” the principal told the child.
The Broward State Attorney’s Office decided not to charge the 10-year-old.
They said they did not want to criminalize the behavior of a 10-year-old and instead will work with the child’s family to get them help so that a similar situation does not happen again.
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