Pinellas school officials sent out this phone message to parents and student at Gibbs High School this morning: "One of our students was arrested this morning for bringing a gun and drugs on campus another student was arrested for bring drugs."
It was unsettling news that two students, including 17-year-old Joshua Register, had been arrested.
According to police, a school resource officer spotted Register and another boy near a concession stand at the school's athletic field smoking pot around 7 this morning. After searching both students, the officer said he found a loaded handgun in Register's backpack.
St. Pete police say he was already on probation for assaulting a school employee last September. And he's also been arrested for battery on a law enforcement officer.
"Today we are very grateful for the work that the school resource officer did," offered Pinellas schools spokeswoman Melanie Marquez Perra. "He was very proactive and addressed the situation and this was for the sake of safety for the students and the staff at the school."
And this isn't the first time the dangerous mix of guns and students at Gibbs have been discovered. Just two months ago, two students were arrested after police found drugs, money and a gun in a student's locker.
Parent Cassandra Smith-Givins wondered about the safeguards. " I think we need better security, maybe they need wands to do a search when kids get off the buses, when they out the car."
Deshawn Patterson, a junior at Gibbs, agreed security needs to be stepped up -- along with the consequences.
"You get in a fight and it's just a slap on the wrist or you get suspended, but you bring a gun to school and you're back the next day. It makes no sense whatsoever."
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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