REDDING — Police have charged a 13-year-old boy with disorderly conduct after they say he posted a photo of two guns on Instagram Thursday and wrote, “I think I’m ready to go to school.”
Police said they are investigating a second incident in which another student posted a photo of a pistol on Instagram and wrote, “Colt Anaconda .357. Damn I love revolvers.”
Police said that in the first case, a student saw the post to Instagram and reported it.
“A student saw it on Instagram and did exactly what they were supposed to do and reported it to the administration,” Redding police Chief Douglas Fuchs said. Administrators went to the school resource officer based in the school and “together they located the student, removed the student from class and made sure the school was safe, which it was.”
In both cases, Fuchs said, police determined the students did not have immediate access to any guns, nor were the guns taken to school.
Disorderly conduct is a misdemeanor and occurs when a person’s conduct causes “inconvenience, annoyance or alarm,” according to state law.
In the first incident, police said, the two weapons pictured on Instagram were pellet guns, which Redding police have seized. One of the guns had its plastic tip, which indicates it is a facsimile firearm, removed, police said.
In the second incident, the photo police say the student posted was taken from the Internet.
The boy who was charged was released to his parents. Charges are not likely in the second case, Fuchs said.
Facsimile firearms are serious business, Fuchs said.
“My biggest fear is a youth has one of them in his possession … and whether intentioanlly or inadvertantly points it at a police officer,” He said. “We have to make split second decision about use of force.”
Police released images of the Instagram posts to show how realistic the guns appeared, Fuchs said.
By David Owens, Hartford Courant