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Community Leaders: Parents Need to Talk with Children about Guns

People who try to prevent crimes and violence in the community have a message for Arkansas families- talk with your children about guns.
People who try to prevent crimes and violence in the community have a message for Arkansas families- talk with your children about guns. They say it all comes down to parent involvement.

Community leaders would like parents to teach their children to speak up if they see a friend with a gun. They say it can help prevent mass shootings and violence.

All within the past week, a 15-year-old brought a gun to Hall High School,two Central High students used fake guns to try and rob two other students, and Dunbar Middle School students brought BB guns to school.

The leader of the Stop the Violence program says stopping children from bringing guns to school starts with parents.

“They really need to talk to them about the dangers of guns because we don't want to one day just get up and see that we had another big shooting in one of our schools, and if we don't handle this now, it could lead to something like that," says Walter Crockran.

Crockran also wants to see children become more comfortable telling school resource officers about guns.

“Many communities teach them to be afraid of the police officers, but they have to realize that I know a lot of them, but they're really good guys," he says.

While having a BB gun or a knife is not against the law, it is against school policy to bring one to class. Not that long ago, many students left their guns in plain view in the school parking lot.

“The times have changed, the laws have changed, and unfortunately, it's just repercussions of some of the actions that you've had a few people take some of these mass shootings," says Lt. Carl Minden with the Pulaski County Sheriff’s Department.

Some children are even getting into trouble at schools across the country for pointing their fingers at someone in the shape of a gun.

Minden says it is unlikely a child would get a criminal record for doing that here.

“You would be hard pressed for that. If anything, the most you could get is terroristic threatening for the gesture and if you have a kindergartener with it, they're too young. You can't charge them with it," he says.

Under state law, someone under 18 can be charged as an adult for bringing a gun onto school property, and that means you could end up in prison.
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