PALM COAST – Two high school students in Flagler County were arrested in the span of three days last week, one each at Flagler Palm Coast High School and Matanzas High School. The Flagler County Sheriff’s Office detailed each incident in separate reports in the days following their occurrences.
Fake Gun at Flagler Palm Coast High School
The first incident happened at Flagler Palm Coast High School on Wednesday, October 4th. A 15-year-old FPCHS student was accused of pointing a fake, but real-looking, gun at two other students. He’s said to have threatened to shoot them with it. School Resource Deputy Nicholas Champion responded, and recounted the incident from the two threatened students.
According to the FCSO’s report the suspect student pulled the trigger on the fake gun multiple times until the other two students hid in the bathroom. Upon their re-emergence, he is said to have again brandished it at them. At this point they noticed an orange tip, indicative of fake guns, and the ruse was up.
The suspect, whose name will not be disseminated in this article, was spoken to at FPCHS by SRD Champion. He identified the gun as a gel blaster gun made to look like a Glock, with fake graffiti drawn on it. Two charges were levied against the suspect: felony aggravated assault and improper exhibition of a firearm.
“Never, ever threaten someone’s life, even with a fake gun,” said Sheriff Rick Staly of the incident. “A prank like this will only get you arrested. This type of behavior will not be tolerated in our schools.” The student was arrested, booked at the county jail, and then transferred to the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice.
Staff Member Bitten at Matanzas High School
The second of the two incidents occurred at Matanzas High School two days after the first. This time two students were said to be in a fight in the school courtyard. SRD John Landi was called to respond, and arrived to see an employee standing near the fight holding their wounded arm.
The bitten employee said that they stepped in to break up the fight, and put their arm around one of the participants. The 16-year-old was then said to have bit the employee’s arm until the skin was broken. Afterward the student, who will also not be named, was booked at the county jail and then the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice. They were charged with battery on a school official.
“This lack of respect for teachers and staff will not be tolerated in our schools,” Staly said. “School staff and teachers are here to teach you. Don’t fight in school. It takes a bigger person to walk away from a fight and de-escalate the situation than to engage in a fight or attack a faculty member. Parents, talk and teach your students how to handle disagreements and that fighting is not the solution. This will help them for a lifetime. Otherwise, if you don’t do your job as a parent, we will do our job and arrest your child, which we don’t want to do, but we will not tolerate this kind of behavior in our schools.”