Schools locked down after gun report, but weapon turned out to be toy

Two Bibb County schools briefly went into “code red” Wednesday afternoon after a boy on a bicycle was spotted near the schools with what turned out to be a plastic gun.

Dave Gowan, director of risk management for the Bibb County school system, said a woman who was in the neighborhood near King-Danforth Elementary School saw the boy riding his bike on the school grounds at about 3:15 p.m. with what appeared to be a gun and called 911.

Campus police immediately instituted a lockdown — standard procedure when a weapon is found at school — for King-Danforth and Appling Middle School, which is next door on Shurling Drive.

Gowan said the boy was arrested by campus police almost immediately, and the lockdowns were lifted at 3:45 p.m. Because Appling’s dismissal time is 2:40 p.m., many of the students had already left the campus, but King-Danforth was in the middle of dismissing school for the day.

The case is still under investigation, Gowan said. School system officials didn’t release the name or age of the boy who was arrested, but they said he wasn’t a student at King-Danforth. Gowan said he wasn’t certain what charge the boy faced since the gun wasn’t real.

The system is in the process of informing parents at both schools about what happened, and a letter was scheduled be sent home with students today, he said.

To contact writer Phillip Ramati, call 744-4334.