MEMPHIS, TN (WMC) –
A middle school student who accidentally shot himself in the leg told investigators he was given the gun by a clerk who works in a nearby gas station. The student said he did not know the gun was in his backpack, according to a Memphis Police Department incident report.
At 8:00 a.m. Tuesday, the principal of A. Maceo Walker Middle school called police to report that a child had shot himself in front of classroom #N106. The boy was in the school office and the gun was in the principal’s possession.
Police initially reported that the student was 13-years-old. The incident report indicates he is 12-years-old.
The boy told police he dropped the backpack, heard a shot, and realized he’d been shot in his lower left leg. Police interviewed two student witnesses, ages 11 and 12. They said the boy was trying to show them something in his backpack when he dropped it.
Police called for crime scene officers to take pictures, but say that “school personnel cleaned the area of the crime scene prior to officers arrival.”
The incident report lists the gas station as “unknown,” meaning the boy did not provide a location or elaborate on the information. Police say they have gotten conflicting stories on where he got the gun.
The child was issued a juvenile summons for carrying a weapon on school property and reckless endangerment.
Whitehaven resident Robert Mattei was shocked to hear about the incident.
“It’s really kinda tough hearing about all that,” he said. “You don’t bring a gun to school, or a weapon. If it’s not allowed, it’s not allowed.”
Tuesday’s shooting did not result in increased security measures on the school’s campus, according to SCS. Metal detector screenings are routine at the school, just like every other middle school and high school.