UPDATED: Handgun found in student’s locker at Blanchester High School; student will not be back on campus for an extended time, says supt.


By News Journal staff



Photo of pistol found in student’s Blanchester High School locker.

Photo of pistol found in student’s Blanchester High School locker.


Provided by Blanchester Police

BLANCHESTER — At around 10 a.m. Thursday, village police were called to Blanchester High School after school administrators there reported finding a handgun in a 16-year-old student’s locker.

The gun is a semi-automatic pistol, stated a Blanchester Police Department press release. Several rounds of ammunition were in the gun, but none was chambered, meaning the gun was not prepared to be immediately fired.

The firearm was seized and an investigation was opened.

The student whose locker the gun was found in was not taken into custody, the 11:26 a.m. Thursday press release stated.

The police department press release identified the teenager as a “special needs” student.

Once the investigation is completed, the case will be presented to Clinton County Prosecuting Attorney Andrew McCoy.

“It is my understanding that school administrators made the decision to place the high school on ‘lockdown’ when the gun was found,” stated Blanchester Chief of Police Scott Reinbolt, J.D.

Blanchester Local Schools Superintendent Randy Dunlap told the News Journal that at approximately 9:45 a.m. Thursday, “We were notified by another student in the district of a potential weapon on campus … specifically at the high school. We immediately went into a lockdown at the high school, isolated the student and his belongings.”

Staff members searched the suspected student’s locker and found a weapon in a book bag. Law enforcement was notified and was on-site immediately. At that time, they took over the investigation due to the nature of the incident, said Dunlap.

“Local law enforcement is handling the criminal investigation. The student was removed from the district and is facing disciplinary action. The student will not be back on campus for an extended time as the legal and disciplinary process unfolds over the next few weeks,” the superintendent said.

During the school day, Dunlap issued a notice where he thanked those who made the school district aware of the TikTok social media post referring to Friday, December 17, 2021 as “National Shoot Up Your School day.”

The superintendent added, “Given the most recent events across the country [Michigan] as well as in our own district, we are taking this social media presentation seriously. Local law enforcement is aware of this social media post and as such, Blanchester Police and Clinton County Sheriff Department will have an increased presence in and around our buildings Friday December 17th.”

Photo of pistol found in student’s Blanchester High School locker.
https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2021/12/web1_P1030004.jpgPhoto of pistol found in student’s Blanchester High School locker. Provided by Blanchester Police

https://www.wnewsj.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/22/2021/12/web1_BPD-logo-1.jpegProvided by Blanchester Police

By News Journal staff