AKRON, Ohio — A Firestone Community Learning Center student was arrested late Friday afternoon after allegedly being found with a loaded gun inside the Akron high school.
According to police, the 17-year-old senior was planning to attend Firestone's boys basketball game against Buchtel on Friday evening when he asked a staff member if he could get something from his locker.
The employee claimed to see the teen "carrying [his] coat in a manner that aroused her suspicions" and after getting the jacket from him found the handgun inside one of the pockets.
Officers arrived just after 5:30 p.m. with the student in the principal's office. The "safely secured" firearm was turned over to authorities and the suspect was taken into custody on charges of carrying a concealed weapon and illegal conveyance. He is currently being held in the Summit County Juvenile Detention Facility.
Police say the incident "did not cause any disturbance" to pregame events such as fans arriving at Firestone's gym. The matchup tipped off at 7 p.m., as scheduled, with Buchtel eventually winning.
"We thank the alert administrator whose training led her to follow her instincts and take control of the situation until police arrived," Akron Public Schools official Mark Williamson told 3News.
On Saturday, Akron Public Schools released a safety plan update, which can be read below:
This is just the latest in a series of episodes that have brought the safety of Akron Public Schools into question. Since the beginning of November, students have been stabbed at both Firestone and Buchtel, and just this week both Firestone and Litchfield CLC were briefly placed on lockdown after a seventh-grader was found with a gun inside the latter school.
"The alert and swift actions of the APS administrator, along with the prompt response by the police, represent not only a solid mutual partnership but also an unwavering commitment toward enhancing public safety," Akron police said of Friday's affair.
The concerns have thrown a wrench into labor negotiations between the district and its teachers, with the union recently rejecting a fact-finder's recommendations for a new deal by an overwhelming margin. Both sides are now headed to federal mediation.
Editor's note: The videos at the top and bottom of this story are from previous coverage.