A student is facing a Student Code of Conduct referral after a a loaded magazine was found in his unattended backpack last week.
Around 1:30 p.m., April 17, a professor picked up a backpack in a classroom in Weiss Hall which had been left after class and found a loaded magazine inside, but no gun, Assistant Vice President for University Communications Ray Betzner said. The professor immediately contacted Temple Police who were able to identify the student, who had left his identification in the backpack.
The male student had apparently left the backpack after class and claimed that the backpack and the magazine were his, and he produced a permit to carry a weapon matching the ammunition, Betzner said. The student has been referred for violating the Student Code of Conduct, which prohibits ammunition from being brought on campus.
The incident – which Deputy Director of Campus Safety Services Charlie Leone called accidental – didn’t bring any criminal charges but will provoke an SCC hearing.
“We have zero tolerance when it comes to any firearm on campus, or ammunition, things of that nature,” Leone said. “Anything that can pose a public safety hazard.”
The code is extremely strict when it comes to firearms. Any student found in possession of a firearm on campus will be suspended from the university pending an SCC investigation, according to the code.
Though this immediate suspension does not carry over to a possession of only ammunition, Dean of Students Stephanie Ives said the code extends to all students, even if they have a permit to carry a weapon – which this student did.
“Having a firearm on campus would be very dangerous. We do not allow anyone who is not a law enforcement officer [to carry firearms],” Ives said. “People who have permits to carry are not allowed to carry on campus.”
No TU Alert or Advisory was issued when the magazine was found, because officials concluded that at no time was there a “threat to students or campus,” Betzner said.
These findings disprove early socil media rumors that a gun had been found in or near Gladfelter Hall – the same place where a threat referring to the 1999 Columbine High School shooting was found scrawled in a bathroom in March. Another Columbine-related message was found in Gladfelter on April 16, but officials said they are not viewing it as a threat.
Sean Carlin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @SeanCarlin84.