School gun incident moves to Alcorn youth court

By Lena Mitchell/NEMS Daily Journal

CORINTH – A 1906 handgun allegedly taken from a student at school last month remains in possession of the Alcorn County Sheriff’s Department.
Chief Deputy David Derrick said the gun will be held at least until the case is disposed of by the youth court.
A Kossuth Elementary School student is accused of having a gun at school Dec. 18, 2012, said this week from the superintendent’s office.
When notified, the teacher contacted the school office and administrators, who went to the room and removed the child in question and the child’s belongings from the room.
The child then was taken to the school office and the sheriff’s department called and provided information about a .22- caliber unloaded pistol. No ammunition for the gun was found on the child or in the child’s possession.
“The gun was actually inoperable, with a screw put in that wouldn’t let you put a bullet in it,” Derrick said, “but a gun is still a gun.”
The accused child was expelled from the Alcorn County School District for possession of a gun on campus in compliance with Mississippi law, said Superintendent Gina Smith.
Smith went on a local radio talk show Thursday morning to respond to questions, especially concerns she’d heard about an alleged coverup of the incident.
“It happened the week after Sandy Hook (Connecticut shooting) and we wanted to protect the minor child and family, as well as not raise fears that would make our children and their families scared for them to come to school, and possibly prevent a copycat incident,” Smith said. “At all times our children were safe and being protected.”
Though the school district may proceed with its actions in accordance with school policy, the law requires that the case must still go through youth court, Derrick said.
lena.mitchell@journalinc.com