Deputies test middle school students on fake weapons

Deputies test middle school students on fake weapons

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COLUMBUS More than 400 students at Yorktown Middle School were faced with a very real lesson in gun recognition. They were asked to decide between real and fake weapons shown to them by Franklin County Sheriff’s deputies.

“Raise your hand if you think it’s real,” said deputy Jessica Gabriel, as she spoke to an auditorium of students at Yorktown.

Many officers face that question of whether or not a weapon is real or fake but, often times they have very little time and/or no evidence to make an educated decision.

“We have to decide in a fraction of a second, ” said Gabriel as she told students.

Rarely are students and parents faced with similar scenarios.

“Is that something you all considered before?,” 10TV asked an eighth grade parent Yolonda Brown. “No. Not at all,” she responded.

Deputy Gabriel explained the instantaneous decision officers must make between real or fake weapons and even life or death.

“Think about police officers in a high stress situation,” Gabriel said. “One of those things you never think is going to happen. We arrive at the scene. Our adrenaline is going. We can feel our heart pumping through our vest.”

Sixth, seventh, and eighth graders heard the possible scenarios straight from an officer.

“It was good to hear because some kids, like I know they are always talking about gangs and guns and all that. Like half of them needed to hear that,” said Bronson Jones, fake id maker online an eighth grader at Yorktown.

Parents, on the other hand, were forced to digest a sometimes ugly truth. “It’s scary, especially the kids growing up today,” said Brown. “Just knowing that anybody could maybe try to influence [your child].”

The idea for the seminar came from the administration at Yorktown Middle.

“I have direct contact with 420 some odd kids,” said Ronnie Brown, principal at Yorktown. “If I can affect even just one of their lives to make appropriate decisions in their neighborhoods and communities then it’s very beneficial.”

Brown said Yorktown has had its fair share of gun violence which impacts its school population.

“Here at Yorktown, in this community, we’ve lost maybe 7 8 students to some type of gun violence in the community over the past 10 years. And it really hits hard with you when you’ve had those students in your school building, ” Brown said.

The goal of the event was to show students how to react when approached by officers.

“I just hope that all schools pick up on what Mr. Brown has done here and that they are able to get it in all schools and police departments,” said Donna Jones, Bronson’s mother.

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