AUSTIN (KXAN) — Austin Independent School District police arrested five students Friday from Webb Middle School in connection with the loaded gun found on campus earlier this week, according to AISD Police Chief Eric Mendez.
The students will face a range of charges including bringing a weapon into a prohibited place, tampering with evidence and failure to report.
Using information given to them by students, police and a K-9 unit searched the Webb Middle School campus and found a .25-caliber semiautomatic pistol under a portable March 31 about 2 p.m.. There were five rounds loaded into gun, but no bullet in the chamber.
School administrators contacted AISD police shortly before 10 a.m. Monday after students tipped them off about a classmate bringing a gun to campus.
Mendez said a student brought the gun to school March 28 and then took it home before bringing it back the following Monday. That student then passed the gun off to another kid.
Three other students helped hide the pistol under the portable, Mendez said.
Chief Mendez did not say why the student brought the gun to school or if they intended to use it, but did say an adult could be charged with making the gun accessible to a minor.
A day after, Mendez explained to parents what happened, saying that police got to the campus and talked to multiple students who had information. Police say those students told officers where to find the gun and also told them the it had been on campus the Friday before as well.
“We remained diligent because even if the gun was brought here Friday, we want to know where the gun is now,” said Mendez on Tuesday.
Police also went to the home of the student who allegedly brought the gun on campus before recovering the weapon Monday around 2 p.m. The gun was discovered under a portable and Mendez says that there were five rounds loaded into gun, but no bullet in the chamber.
While some parents praised the school for keeping their children safe and continuing to learn, others wanted to know why they were not notified sooner and why the school was not placed on a lockdown.
But Mendez assured parents the situation was under control.
“If we at the time felt this campus was unsafe and we needed to lock it down, we would’ve locked it down,” he said.
Mendez also invited parents to continue the safety discussions at monthly school meetings.
Webb Middle School houses students in 6th, 7th and 8th grade.