'Pastry gun' case involving Anne Arundel County elementary schooler settled

The pastry gun case involving an Anne Arundel County boy has been settled.

The case of an Anne Arundel County seven-year-old who was suspended for nibbling a pastry into the shape of a gun has been settled after more than three years.

A spokesman for Anne Arundel County schools and the child's family's attorney confirmed the settlement on Tuesday but would not comment on the details of the resolution, saying they were bound by its non-disclosure terms.

The suspension garnered widespread media attention as the boy's father, William "B.J." Welch, and the boy, Josh, appeared on CNN and Fox News. Lawmakers in Florida were inspired to pass a bill making pastry guns legal and the National Rifle Association gave the boy a lifetime membership.

"It just seems very clear to me that Maryland needs a law that says that public schools … should not be allowed to suspend any student unless there's actual bodily injury or a weapon brought onto campus," Robin Ficker, an attorney for the Welch family, said Tuesday.

The settlement was reached on Oct. 20, Ficker said. Schools spokesman Bob Mosier confirmed the settlement but declined to comment further.

In 2013, the boy, then a student at Park Elementary in Brooklyn Park, nibbled the Pop-Tart-like pastry into the shape of a gun then pointed it at another student, school officials said. The school maintained that the incident was one of many disruptive incidents by the child. The boy is now 11, Ficker said.

Ficker said the case was mediated with the help of a judge from the Court of Special Appeals.

cwells@baltsun.com

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