Student Had Permission to Bring Fake Gun to School, Police Came Anyway

Can't be too careful, eh?



I've written a lot of stories about school administrators and law enforcement freaking out because a student inadvertently brought a toy gun to school. But this might be the first case I've covered where the student who triggered the mass hysteria actually had permission from a school official to bring a fake weapon to school.

Needless to say, the police locked down the school anyway.

Northern Valley Regional High School in Demarest, New Jersey, is staging a production of the musical Hello, Dolly! and a student was tasked with bringing a fake rifle to school as a prop for the play. But parents who saw the student walking to school with a rifle in tow became alarmed. According to this news story, both parents and school officials called the cops. The police proceeded to lock down the school.

After the non-threat was handled, police and school officials held a press conference where they congratulated themselves on their good judgment.

"The police chief says he's proud of how his department responded and how the school handled the situation, because they did exactly what they were trained to do," WABC correspondent Dray Clark reported. "At Northern Valley Regional High School, their safety motto is 'see something, say something.'"

Can't be too careful, eh?

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  1. I’m going to guess the student was white, and that’s why he or she is still alive. I’m assuming he’s alive as there was no mention of the student being killed in a hail of gunfire.

  2. “At Northern Valley Regional High School, their safety motto is ‘see something, say something.'”

    My alternatives:

    Loose lips sink ships.

    Rats get cement shoes.

    1. Snitches get stitches.

  3. “At Northern Valley Regional High School, their safety motto is ‘see something, say something.'”

    Kids these days. In my day we would have taken advantage of this and on a daily basis reported seeing branches as rifles and lunchboxes as ammo tins.

  4. I brought a wooden musket to school for a play or something in…1992? Nothing happened. Apparently the government schools were still that sane that recently, or at least they were in flyover country.

    1. My high school history teacher used to give the Beer Hall Putsch speech, complete with pistol shot (starting gun).

    2. When I was in 5th grade my class staged a re-enactment of Lexington and Concorde, complete with cardboard muskets. The rebel colonists mowed down the British regulars to the delight of the other 5th grade classes and the teachers.

      I’ve a feeling that wouldn’t be allowed anymore.

    3. We used to play Assassin and shit with variations of fake guns running from obvious water guns to super realistic cap guns. No one gave a shit. Because they knew no one was going to shoot up the school.

      Guess what? No one did.

    4. Lolz, I was in a high school production of Oklahoma! and played the father of one of the sexy young girls who has to get married to some itinerant salesman at gunpoint and brought an actual double barrel shotgun to school.

      1. I envy you. The principal forced our sketch comedy group to replace a cap gun with a banana. This was six years before Columbine, by the way.

        1. Fan of Monty Python, eh?

        2. Fan of Monty Python, eh?


        1. shut up, you’d accept pics of sexy old girls.

    5. Other than that, how did you enjoy the play, Mrs. Lincoln?

    6. I’m pretty sure we had realistic looking gun replicas as props in school plays in the 90s. And not even flyover country.
      I can’t remember if people used to bring real guns to school, but some people bought their hunting bows to school when we were doing archery in gym class. I bet they don’t do that any more.

      1. The year I graduated from high school, 1965, virtually every high school in New York City had a riflery program. Students carried .22LR rifles back and forth on the subway, and nobody paid them any more attention than the band kid with the trombone. Shooting ranges were in the school basement, and there were city-wide competitions for college scholarships.

        And the rifles weren’t registered.

  5. Is that press conference being held in front of the school? If so, everyone in attendance should have been calling the police and sheltering in place. Can’t be too safe, can you?

    1. Actually, now I want to start of movement of people who call the police whenever an armed officer enters a school zone for any reason.

  6. So…

    Nobody got shot.

    Nobody got suspended or punished.

    People saw a kid with a rifle in an area that’s not commonplace and called the police.

    The police … looked into it while taking pretty reasonable precautions, found out there was no danger, and the situation ended.

    Is there a problem here?

    1. According to the press conference, they confiscated the pre-approved toy rifle to have a prop for the press conference. Yes, there’s a problem. Several, in fact.

    2. Yes, a rifle should be commonplace in schools so that kids can LEARN about what a firearm is.

      Fuck off, statist.

    3. Yes.

      1. Not common does not mean illegal. I don’t expect the police to follow me around when driving on the off chance I might decide to run some one over. I don’t expect the police to freak out when someone carries a perfectly legal gun.

      2. ‘Reasonable precautions’? To *lock down* a school, in the absence of an actual threat? No, that’s not reasonable – that’s ‘Boston Strong’.

      1. Strong = Stupid

    4. Also, it wasn’t a rifle. It was a prop rifle.

      Fuck you, statist.

    5. “pretty reasonable precautions” includes locking down a school for 30 minutes? And taking her fake gun away? There is nothing reasonable about that at all.

      1. Apparently the statist standard for acceptability is “nobody died.”

        Except when the police shoot some innocent, unarmed person. Then the standard drops down to “Police gotta go home to their families at night. Can’t take chances. That guy oughta not looked so threatening (speaking of 12 year old kids with toy guns).”

        Basically “Fuck you. We do what we want. We kill who we want. You’re looking pretty threatening there yourself….”

  7. Hopefully now they will have a procedure where a police officer or school resource officer (what a title for a school cop) will come out to the student’s car, take possession of the terrifying prop, convey it to the prop room, properly secure it there (maybe even earn overtime by constantly guarding it) if locked storage is not available, give it to the actor as required while waiting off-stage, re-taking possession when it is not in use and finally walking it back to the original student’s vehicle when it is no longer needed.

    1. Don’t forget about the paperwork trail required at every transfer of possession.

      And think of the jerbs created – now we’ll need to hire someone to audit the paperwork for regulatory compliance.

      1. Ooooh yeah, all those transfer fees, especially in WA state, now that I-594 (I-591?) passed.

  8. You have to understand that the real problem here is liability and responsibility. No cop wants to be the chief or the desk sergeant who didn’t take a report seriously and then it actually ends up being the worst case scenario. No one wants to be the administrator who goes “eh it’s just a toy” and then have it be real.

    It doesn’t excuse this behavior but that’s what the real basis for this is, not so much pants-shitting. At the end of the day it’s massive ass covering. These people would rather be absurd, waste tons of money, scare people needlessly, and be general assholes, than have any possibility of anything blowing back on them.

    1. Or the cop could have walked up and said “Hey what do you have there?” Student:”I have a prop gun for a play Officer Friendly”. Cop: “Can I look at it?” “That’s a cool replica, good luck in the play”. And go the hell back to the office.

      Of course common sense isn’t allowed anymore.

  9. The police chief says he’s proud of how his department responded and how the school handled the situation, because they did exactly what they were trained to do.

    “We didn’t think, we just acted, just like our training requires,” the chief said, “Whenever people stop to think instead of just reacting you never know what can happen. Someone at the school might have taken the time to tell us that the student had permission to bring the fake gun to school and then we would have never had the chance to put on all our SWAT costumes or drive our MRAP. And that’s not why we got into this line of work. Just to be on the safe side we shot some dogs on the way back to the station,” he said.

    I may have added a little to that last part.

  10. Who is the ass who told a kid to bring a realistic prop gun to school?

    1. Yeah. They should do the play in their normal clothes too so they don’t confuse anyone.

  11. What actually bothers me the most here is that “lockdown” is now supposed to be some normal thing that happens to people who aren’t in prison. Fuck that.

    1. yes. ^^this^^

    2. Yes, my 2nd grade son is slowly being lulled into accepting it since, you know, his odds of a shooting are about the same as winning the powerball.

    3. +1 rat in a cage

  12. my best friend’s ex-wife makes $65 an hour on the computer . She has been without a job for seven months but last month her check was $13740 just working on the computer for a few hours. try this…………..


  13. Feeble minded, brain-dead “officials” patting themselves on the back.
    This is what our tax dollars pay for.

  14. Not the best way to spend your afternoon. They could’ve been a lot more useful. I mean it’s just one student with a permission. I’d be worried if a lot of students brought guns, that way they could’ve done a mess, like scare people etc. Last year a student here had to buy essay papers for sale because he got expelled after bringing a gun-looking toy to school. I’m not trying to justify him since it wasn’t the best way to attract attention, however, people are on the verge of hysteria today.

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