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'See something say something,' Gibraltar superintendent on speaking up after student brings gun to school

Posted at 5:10 PM, Mar 19, 2024
and last updated 2024-03-19 18:22:57-04

DOOR COUNTY (NBC 26) — We're hearing from the Gibraltar school district after police say a student brought a loaded gun to class. The Gibraltar school district superintendent says the motto ‘see something, say something,’ helped quickly de-escalate a scary situation.

  • Video shows Gibraltar School District superintendent sharing what's next after a student brought a gun to class on Friday.
  • On Monday 17-year-old Aidan Rice was charged as an adult for, "possession of a firearm on grounds of a school."

(The following is a transcription of the full broadcast story)

A normal school day changed quickly this past Friday.

"Yeah, it's it's scary. You know, it's very scary," said Stousland

Around 11:00 a.m., the Gibraltar school resource officer was told by a teacher that she had received a sticky note from a student reading, "gun in pocket."

17-year-old Aidan Rice was identified as the suspect, and the principal removed him from class

After searching Rice's things, a loaded gun was found in his jacket.

He told the school resource officer he was scared of another student (who had not attended the school since November 2023) and felt he needed protection.

Superintendent Brett Stousland says staff debriefed before school on Monday morning.

"I don't think in the history of our school we've had a weapon, a gun in our school," said Stousland.

On Monday, Rice was charged as an adult for, "possession of a firearm on grounds of a school."

I reached out to the family of Aidan Rice, who told me they didn't wish to talk at this time.

I also contacted Northern Door Activism, a group I spoke to back in July about gun violence awareness.

One member, Sarah White, provided the following statement:

"...We live in a tight-knit community. We can proactively address gun violence through education about responsible gun ownership, including limiting access to them. We can empower kids to speak up when they see something. We can keep our voices heard at school board meetings.”

In the next two years building construction will take place with added safety features.

"At a push of a button, we can lock down the school and compartmentalize where people can't get to other spaces," said Stousland.

Superintendent Stousland urges students to not be afraid to speak up.

''We'd rather be on, you know, air on the side of caution and have a kid or a child share something with a parent or a trusted adult in our building, and let us check it out,” said Stousland.

On April eighth the Gibraltar school board will have a meeting to debrief their safety policies and discuss what they will change in the future.