A 12-year-old girl has been arrested after allegedly pretending to shoot her classmates with an imaginary “finger gun” in Overland Park, Kansas.
The girl allegedly held her thumb and finger in the shape of a pistol and pointed it at four of her classmates, one by one, before pointing it at herself, the Kansas City Star reports. The incident happened on Sept. 18 at Westridge Middle School in Overland Park.
The girl was arrested and led out of her school in handcuffs, the paper reports. She was later charged with a felony for threatening.
The Shawnee Mission School District was not responsible for the arrest, spokesperson David Smith said. Instead, he pointed the finger at police.
“I want to be very clear: the arrest of this student was wholly unrelated to any district policy,” Smith told local station KSHB. “It was a municipal police department decision, and our policies don’t impact police department decisions.”
Overland police told KSHB they were alerted to the potential threat through the school district’s online reporting portal. The school resource officer and a school staffer reportedly interviewed the accused and a witness then opted to make the arrest.
“Ensuring the safety of everyone in a school, or community, is a top priority and requires constant vigilance, parents reminding their children of proper behaviour in school and an understanding by the public that each case is thoroughly investigated before any arrest is made and a charge filed,” police said in a statement to KSHB.
They added that the 12-year-old was taken to an “appropriate facility” after the arrest.
KSHB footage shows the school has signs prohibiting real firearms on the property.