Weapons cases not unknown at schools

County has seen 3 other incidents in past year

By Erik Hidle, Columbian staff writer

Published:

 

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TIMELINE

The discovery of a handgun being carried by an 11-year-old boy at Frontier Middle School is another addition to an annual pattern of Clark County authorities acting on students bringing firearms to schools.

• On Jan. 23, 19-year-oldJase Alan Vesterby was arrested for allegedly bringing a firearm to Prairie High School at an earlier date. His court disposition and action by the school were not available.

• On Dec. 12, 2012, 15-year-old Wyatt Michael Ball brought a combination rifle/shotgun to Evergreen High School with plans to sell the weapon. He was expelled. He was later sentenced to 30 days of detention, one year of probation and 40 days of community service.

• Also on Dec. 12, 2012, a 17-year-old student at Skyview High School was arrested for allegedly bringing a BB gun or pellet air pistol to the school's parking lot. His court disposition and action by the school were not available.

• The Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction for Washington keeps count of weapons incidents resulting in suspension and expulsion in schools dating back to 2004. Between the 2004-05 school year and the 2011-12 school year, there have been 53 incidents involving handguns, rifles or other firearms at Clark County schools.

The OSPI has yet to collect data for the 2012-13 school year.

Nationwide

Days before Thursday's incident in Clark County, a 12-year-old boy in Sparks, Nev., went on a fatal shooting spree at his own middle school.

The Nevada youth, who has yet to be identified by police, entered the Sparks Middle School campus Monday morning and opened fire, killing a teacher and injuring two students before fatally turning the gun on himself.

Any apparent motive for the shooting has yet to be released.

The shooting is one of several that have taken place at American K-12 schools over the past year. A partial list of incidents include:

• On Aug. 30, 18-year-old Christopher Lamont Richardson Jr. allegedly shot and injured another student at Carver High School in Winston-Salem, N.C.

• On Aug. 20, 20-year-old Michael Brandon Hill fired six shots from an AK-47 inside a Decatur, Ga., elementary school. No one was injured or killed in the incident.

• On Jan. 31, a 15-year-old male student shot and wounded another student at Price Middle School in Atlanta, Ga.

• On Jan. 10, 16-year-old Bryan Oliver allegedly shot and injured one student and one teacher with a 12-gauge shotgun at Taft Union High School in Taft, Calif.

• On Dec. 14, 2012, 20-year-old Adam Lanza entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and killed 20 children and six staff members with a rifle before using a pistol to kill himself.