Brandon Valley parent outraged he wasn't notified of gun scare - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Brandon Valley parent outraged he wasn't notified of gun scare

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The Brandon Valley School District's policies are being questioned Thursday.

The school didn't tell parents about a student who brought a gun to an after school event. The weapon turned out to be an air soft gun and no one was hurt.

Last Friday night was 'Family Fun Night' at Robert Bennis Elementary School. Around 6:30, the Brandon Police Department received a report of a 4th grader with a pellet gun threatening to assault other kids.

Today a parent is outraged that parents were not notified of this incident.

Darin Porter has three kids. One is a first grader at Robert Bennis Elementary. He first heard about a 4th grader bringing a gun to 'Family Fun Night' when KSFY told him.

"There's things in place to contact all of us -- especially when we have bad weather -- they send out a notification that comes via telephone and text to let us all know about that. So why we were not just even updated or even told about this situation? You don't have to go into detail but why weren't we told," said Porter.

Robert Bennis Principal Karen Heyden says it was decided parents didn't need to be notified because it happened after school hours.

"It went so smoothly, it went so quickly -- most of the people in here didn't even know what was going on," said Heyden.

Porter says he doesn't care if the incident after school -- it happened at a school sponsored event on school grounds.
"Was the place cleared? In fact, I know it wasn't because my daughter came home from it and had a good time. But if I saw a child that had a gun, that looked like a gun -- my gosh -- I would have been grabbing my child and running away in the other direction," said Porter.

The air soft gun had nothing on it to visually distinguish it as a fake.

"There's no orange indicators. This looks exactly like the first firearm I had," said Sgt. Wayne Ellingson, Brandon Police Department.

Porter says the district needs to revisit their policy.

"What if this is the first they've heard of it is on the news? I dare to say that there's going to be a lot of hysterics and a lot of questions and I think that could have been averted if they would have at least notified everybody," said Porter.

The 4th grader is  being charged with bringing a weapon onto school property and disturbance of a school function. Brandon Police tell us the child will appear in court at a later date.

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