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Gun found in student's locker at Blanchester High School, police say

School placed on brief lockdown
Gun recovered form locker at Blanchester High School
Posted at 11:53 AM, Dec 16, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-16 21:11:38-05

BLANCHESTER, Ohio — A gun was found in a student's locker at Blanchester High School Thursday morning.

Blanchester police said in a press release officers were dispatched to the school around 10 a.m. after administrators found a semi-automatic pistol in a 16-year-old "special needs" student's locker.

Blanchester schools told WCPO they received a tip from a middle school student who saw the gun. School officials isolated the student after finding the gun in their locker. The school was then placed on lockdown as they waited for police to arrive. Students at the school all remained in their classrooms, according to Blanchester schools.

Police said several rounds of ammunition were loaded in the gun, but none were chambered (meaning it was not ready to be fired).

The firearm was seized by police, but they said the student whose locker it was found in was not taken into custody. They said the investigation is ongoing, and did not elaborate on the specifics of what "special needs" the student has, but police did say it plays a factor in whether criminal charges are considered or not.

The student was removed from the school, according to Blanchester schools, and the student will not be allowed back in until a disciplinary investigation is completed by the school.

The school said there was no specific threat made, just a case of an aware fellow student who saw something and said something.

Randy Dunlap, superintendent of Blanchester Local Schools, posted to the school district's Facebook page, acknowledging the day's events, but looking ahead to a supposed "National Shoot Up Your School day" scheduled for Friday, Dec. 17. He said there will be an increased police presence at Blanchester's schools out of an abundance of caution on Friday.

This latest discovery inside a school comes after more than five schools around the Tri-State were threatened in some way in the weeks following the fatal Michigan school shooting.

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