In a case of zero tolerance taken too far, two Virginia Beach seventh-graders were suspended and face possible expulsion for firing airsoft guns in one of the boy’s own yard.
Khalid Caraballo, 13, and his friend, Aidan Clark, were summarily suspended for shooting the toy guns at two other students while waiting for the school bus Earlier this month. The boys said they were Caraballo’s yard the entire time, never went near the bus stop with the toy guns and never took them to school, according to WAVY-TV.
Clark’s father, Tim Clark, told WAVY that the school’s move lacked common sense.
Caraballo’s mother agreed.
“My son is my private property,” Solangel Caraballo told the TV station. “He does not become the school’s property until he goes to the bus stop, gets on the bus and goes to school.”
Solangel Caraballo was not at home when this incident occurred. She was taking her young son to a Head Start class. She left her 16-year -old daughter in charge.
Khalid and Aiden aren’t only suspended, they were recommended to be expelled for a year for “possession, handling and use of a firearm.”
The suspension began after a neighbor called police to report that Caraballo was target shooting the gun in his yard, telling the dispatcher, “He is pointing the gun, and it looks like there’s a target in a tree in his front yard.”
According to the 911 recording, the neighbor was aware the gun was a toy.
“This is not a real one, but it makes people uncomfortable,” she said. “I know that it makes me [uncomfortable], as a mom, to see a boy pointing a gun.”
Caraballo said he would never shoot the toy gun off while waiting for the bus again, telling WAVY-TV:
It’s terrible. I won’t get the chance to go to a good college. It’s on your school record. The school said I had possession of a firearm. They aren’t going to ask me any questions. They are going to think it was a real gun, and I was trying to hurt someone. They will say “oh, we can’t accept you.”