Menifee middle school on edge after student brings gun to school, another student receives threat

Leticia Juarez Image
Saturday, June 3, 2023
Menifee middle school is on edge after student brings gun to school
A Menifee middle school is on edge after a 12-year old student brought an unloaded gun with him to campus and -- in an unrelated incident -- another student received a threat online that read "Can they dodge a bullet?"

MENIFEE, Calif. (KABC) -- A Menifee middle school is on edge after a 12-year-old student brought a gun with him to campus.

The gun turned out to be unloaded, but parents, students and school employees remain concerned after the incident.

"I'm really shaken now because my neighbor sent me an email about the student arrested with a gun and I'm so nervous to go in there right now," said Pamela Frazier, an employee at Ethan Chase Middle School.

Police came to the school on Wednesday and arrested the 12-year-old for felony possession of a firearm on school grounds after he was found to have an unloaded gun in his backpack.

Menifee police say they don't believe the boy was trying to threaten anyone with the gun, but merely to show it off.

"There is nothing that leads us to believe that there was a credible threat to the school," said Captain Heriberto Gutierrez of the Menifee Police Department. "It's still under investigation, but we don't have any suspicions there was criminal intent behind it."

Adding to the confusion, police did not immediately inform parents of the incident. Richard Sandoval said he learned of the gun and arrest from his seventh grader.

"It is a little bit surprising, I'd like to think they were trying to get the information together, the facts present it to the parents, but some things you want to know right away," said Sandoval.

The school district did eventually let parents know of the arrest in a vaguely worded message that also informed parents of a threat on social media made to a student that was reported on Monday.

Someone sent the message "Can they dodge a bullet?" to a student on a social media app. Police say the threat was not credible and is unrelated to the gun incident.

Eyewitness News reached out to the Romoland Unified School District for comment, but they referred us to the police department, who provided this message to parents and students:

"It is important that if you see something on school grounds to say something as a student it is important to report suspicious activity to adults to administrators and in this case the right thing was done."