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Youth charged with bringing gun to school in Carroll County

A 15-year-old middle school student was arrested on Wednesday after police said he took a loaded handgun to his school in Hampstead and told an assistant principal that he was "struggling with thoughts of suicide."

The eighth grade student at North Carroll Middle School was charged as a juvenile with gun possession. Maryland State Police said he voluntarily surrendered the semi-automatic .40 caliber handgun, which was in a lunch bag and had three bullets in the magazine.

"There is no indication at this time that the student had any desire to harm anyone other than himself," police said in a statement. "There is no indication that anyone else was assisting him or than anyone else even knew of his intent to harm himself."

According to state police, the teen took the gun to school in his lunch bag and stored it in his locker. Shortly before 11 a.m., police said he took the bag to the lunchroom, but then approached the assistant principal and told him he was thinking about taking his own life.

The school official took the teen to a private room and met with a guidance counselor. "The student handed her a soft cooler bag in which he carries his lunch," police said. "Inside the bag, the teacher found a suicide note and a semi-automatic pistol."

Authorities said the guidance counselor called the principal, who alerted a Maryland State Police trooper who was teaching an anti-drug seminar in a nearby classroom. The trooper confiscated the weapon and arrested the young man.

Police said they are investigating who the gun belongs to and how the youth obtained the weapon.

peter.hermann@baltsun.com

Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun
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