Thursday, November 20, 2008

Teen with Gun Arrested at Boston English

A teenager with a firearm was arrested this morning at Boston English High School in Jamaica Plain.

Seventeen year-old Walter West of Dorchester is being charged with unlawful possession of a gun and ammunition, unlawful possession of a gun on school property, resisting arrest and trespassing. Also arrested for trespassing were two other 17 year-olds from Dorchester, Damien Oliver and Tyrone Rutledge, along with two juveniles.

Boston Police say the arrests followed a disturbance at the school that was reported around 9 a.m. Authorities say Oliver was the only one of the teens arrested who is a student at Boston English.

According to police, one of the teens was “focused on and reaching for” a backpack that, as it turned out, contained a loaded firearm.

Prosecutors say it was Oliver who let the other teens into the school through a side door. The chief communications officer for the Boston School Dept., Christopher Horan, says the door can only be opened from the inside, and he says students who come in through the regular entrance are randomly searched for weapons with a metal detecting wand.

Once the intruders were in the building, said Horan, they were quickly recognized as trespassers.

“It certainly is troubling,” he said, “but we were all impressed how quickly and appropriately the school responded.”