Helper student’s prop gun sparks panic

By Janelle Stecklein

The Salt Lake Tribune

Published: March 20, 2012 10:48AM
Updated: March 20, 2012 11:42PM

A Helper student now knows his drama prop looks convincing enough to pass as the real thing after it caused panic and prompted his school to go into lockdown.

Helper Police Chief Trent Anderson said the Helper Junior High drama club student decided for whatever reason to bring his fake rifle to school Tuesday morning. As the boy waited for a bus to pick him up to take him to Price at about 8 a.m., police received multiple reports that a student had a gun and had boarded a bus with it, Anderson said.

Officials were concerned enough that they locked down Helper Junior High and Sally Mauro Elementary School for about 30 minutes while they sorted through the reports.

Anderson said police later determined the student did in fact have a gun — a fake wooden prop that couldn’t shoot ammunition.

“We’re glad to see it was just a prop gun,” he said.

Anderson said the student likely wouldn’t face any disciplinary action for his decision.

“It was innocent. Obviously a poor decision but innocent in nature.”

jstecklein@sltrib.com

Twitter @sltribjanelle