Dubuque Schools 'concerned' after another airsoft pistol found - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Dubuque Schools 'concerned' after another airsoft pistol found

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DUBUQUE (KWWL) - School officials in Dubuque told parents Tuesday that the "seemingly growing presence" of airsoft pistols being found in students' belongings at Dubuque schools is "concerning."

Stan Rheingans, superintendent of the Dubuque Community School District, sent a letter to district families Tuesday after officials received a report of another airsoft pistol in a student's possession Monday.

He said officials believe the pistol was discharged "at least once on the morning bus" and again off of school grounds, but that there were no "serious injuries."

"Most importantly, this is the second incident involving an airsoft pistol in the school district this year and the seemingly growing presence of these weapons is concerning," Rheingans said.

The first incident, where four airsoft pistols or BB guns were found, happened Sept. 12. Three teenagers were charged in that incident.

In Monday's incident, one 13-year-old student was charged as a juvenile with one count of assault causing injury and one count of simple assault after Dubuque Police say the student discharged the pistol on the bus, striking two students.

Rheingans said that the weapons are non-lethal and not considered a firearm, but that the school district treated them like any other weapon brought to school.

"Both the school district and area law enforcement do not take the presence of these weapons lightly," he said. "Airsoft guns, like all weapons, are strictly prohibited and will not be tolerated at school."

Rheingans reminded parents to talk with their children about the consequences of bringing weapons to school. Students who notice any weapon at school should immediately inform an adult, he added.
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