UPDATE: Iowa City West student charged after gun found in backpa - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

UPDATE: Iowa City West student charged after gun found in backpack

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An Iowa City West student has been charged after a handgun and ammunition was found in his backpack last week.

Police were called to the school just before 3 p.m. on Friday, according to Sgt. Scott Gaarde. The gun was found in the backpack after another student informed a teacher. By the time authorities located the student, that unidentified person had left the school.

No one was injured, and no threats were made to students.

The student in question was hospitalized after turning himself into the North Liberty Police Department.

According to West High School Principal Jerry Arganbright, the student had been in "emotional distress" and a member of the school staff recommended the guidance department speak to the student.

While the guidance department was speaking to the student, employees searched the student's locker and found the gun and ammunition in the backpack.

Arganbright says he does not believe that there was an "immediate danger" to students but says he recognizes the seriousness of the situation. Parents were contacted and left the following message:

"This is Jerry Arganbright, principal at West High. I am calling this afternoon to update you on an incident we had ocur on Friday afternoon in school. While one of our administrators was working with a student who was having some emotional distress he discovered the student had a handgun in his back pack. The weapon was immediately secured and the Iowa City Police were called. At no time was anyone in immediate danger, notwithstanding the seriousness of a weapon on our campus.

The student is currently receiving mental health treatment and support. I will be working with the district administrators to determine both school and district consequences pertaining to the presence of a weapon on our campus. Please feel free to contact me if anyone has any questions. Thank you."

The unnamed student was charged on Thursday with carrying weapons on school grounds and was taken to the Linn County Juvenile Detention Center.

Michelle Corless and Eric Page contributed to this report.

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