Sunday, 21 October, 2018


Monterey County teacher accidentally fires gun in class, injuring students

Alexander has been placed on administrative leave while an investigation has been launched Alexander has been placed on administrative leave while an investigation has been launched
Bennie Garza | 14 March, 2018, 15:52

A teacher who is also a reserve police officer trained in firearm use accidentally discharged a gun Tuesday at Seaside High School in Monterey County, California, during a class devoted to public safety.

Guns in schools are illegal in California but there is an exception for peace officers or those granted specific permission. Upon learning of the incident, our Human Resources department, school site administration and the Seaside Police Department immediately began investigating the incident, including interviewing students in the class.

It remains unclear whether Alexander was legally allowed to have a gun on campus since he serves as a reserve police officer for Sand City, and he has been placed on administrative leave during an ongoing investigation, according to Marci McFadden, a spokesperson for the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District.

"I think a lot of questions on parents' minds are, why a teacher would be pointing a loaded firearm at the ceiling in front of students", Superintendent PK Diffenbaugh told CNN affiliate KSBW. "I'm just pretty upset that no one told us anything and we had to call the police ourselves to report it".

Dennis Alexander was teaching students at Seaside High School about gun safety for his Administration of Justice class when his weapon went off around 1:20 pm on Tuesday.

"It's the craziest thing". "It could have been very bad".

The student injured during the California teacher's lecture has been released from the emergency room a couple of hours later.

"We'll need to revisit protocol to make sure all staff members understand that is the policy", Diffenbaugh says. He says his department will do an administrative investigation of the incident once Seaside PD completes its investigation.

Alexander is also being placed on leave with the local police department.

"We're looking into any violation of city ordinance or the penal code and we'll determine whether or not there are any applicable charges", Pridgen postulated.

Sand City police Chief Brian Ferrante described the teacher's track record as "positive and professional", however, he wondered why he brought a loaded gun in a classroom full of students.

He adds that, "Clearly, we will revisit this incident to ensure that something like this would never happen again".

The incident occurred amid intense national debate over whether school teachers should be armed in the wake of the Parkland, Fla. shooting that left at least 17 people dead.

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