The 10-year-old Douglas MacArthur Elementary school student who was arrested Feb. 5 for an incident involving a toy gun on a school bus will not face criminal charges, according to reports from The Alexandria Times and The Washington Post.
• See Patch's previous story: MacArthur Student Handed Weapons Charge Following Toy Gun Incident
“We did not feel it was appropriate or productive to proceed with criminal prosecution and believe the matter can be best handled administratively within the school system,” Commonwealth’s Attorney Randy Sengel told The Washington Post.
The student showed the toy gun to students on a bus ride home from school on Feb. 4. The mother of another student learned of the incident and contacted the school. MacArthur officials then viewed video of the bus ride.
The next morning at school, the student had his backpack searched. The toy gun was discovered and the police were notified. The student was arrested and charged with brandishing a weapon.
The toy gun had an orange tip, according to a Feb. 5 release from the Alexandria Police Department. In that release, the APD said officers arrived at the school before students arrived.
Nakicha Gilbert, the student’s mother, and others criticized the case’s handling in a story last week in The Washington Post.
• See Patch’s previous story: Mother of ACPS Student Arrested for Toy Gun Incident Criticizes Case's Handling
Alexandria City Public Schools officials said they followed local policies and state laws following notification of the incident.
On Sunday, the Alexandria branch of the NAACP criticized the arrest, calling it “senseless” and “insensitive.” The student is African American.
• See Patch’s previous story: NAACP Criticizes Arrest of MacArthur Student for Toy Gun Incident
“While we are sensitive to and share in the legitimate safety concerns parents and school officials have over the safety and well-being of our children, this incident clearly shows the ‘adults’ involved acted without due regard to basic common sense,” the statement reads. “We expect more from those to whom we entrust our children’s future and educational needs. Subjecting any child, and especially an African American child, to arrest and a possible criminal record over a toy is foolish and insulting to our community.”