A 13-year-old boy is being held in a juvenile detention facility while Poughkeepsie Police investigate a gunfire incident outside Poughkeepsie High School.
Police said in a press release Tuesday that multiple shots were fired near the school after 3 p.m. Monday. Students said several students were leaving school at the time, and they ran into the high school where school leaders issued a hold-in-place order.
Classes were canceled Tuesday while administrators met to “discuss the incident, identify additional procedures to further protect the entire school community and develop a plan to support those adversely impacted by the incident,” a note to parents read.
What You Need To Know
- Parents are concerned about their children walking to and from school while the shooting incident on Monday is not completely solved
- Police said they found several 380-caliber shell casings on the front lawn of the high school, and a witness led them down the street to a 13-year-old who was in possession of a 380-caliber handgun
- Supt. Eric Jay Rosser said classes on Wednesday would also be canceled “as a precautionary measure to protect the safety of our school community and to provide district and building staff opportunity to have the new safety protocols in place”
Late Tuesday, Superintendent Eric Jay Rosser wrote in another note posted to the district’s website that classes on Wednesday would also be canceled “as a precautionary measure to protect the safety of our school community and to provide district and building staff opportunity to have the new safety protocols in place.”
Police said they found several 380-caliber shell casings on the front lawn of the high school, and a witness led them down the street to the 13-year-old who was in possession of a 380-caliber handgun.
Several parents expressed concern about their children walking to and from school while the crime is not yet completely solved. Most were pleased to learn administrators canceled classes and activities at the high school Tuesday while they met inside to discuss additional safety measures.
Rosser said that when students return to school Thursday, city and state police officers will be present near the high school, additional staff will be reassigned to the high school while the district trains additional safety monitors and the school will use “additional technology to strengthen the school’s interior safety posture.”
Poughkeepsie Police Union: Suspects in shots-fired incident in front of Poughkeepsie, #NY High School were 13 and 15 years old, both boys.— Ben Nandy (@BenNandyNews) November 16, 2021
Neither Rosser nor several school board members responded to calls and emails seeking comment. Staff members exited the high school following the safety meetings, walking straight to their cars, ignoring questions from a reporter.
Taron Mizell, who is planning to enroll his son in high school, said frequent fights — and now gun crimes — have kept his family wary of Poughkeepsie schools.
“Due to the gunfire and things like that, I don’t think that he’d want to come here,” he said.
A representative of the Poughkeepsie Police Union - Poughkeepsie PBA - wrote on social media Tuesday that a 15-year-old was also detained after the incident, and the 13-year-old was charged with criminal possession of a weapon.
The union identified both teenagers as “male suspects” who were caught after a brief pursuit.
The union also said police located a vehicle on Daniels Court that had been struck multiple times by bullets.
In the press release from the police department, police said they do not yet have a witness to tell detectives who fired the shots.
They are now doing fingerprint and DNA analysis on the shells and the gun confiscated from the 13-year-old, police said.