Lynn bans BB guns, bats..for the children

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http://www.boston.com/news/local/ma...bb_guns_bats_clubs_to_increase_school_safety/

By Nandini Jayakrishna
Globe Correspondent / August 13, 2009

As students in Lynn prepare for the start of another school year, the city is taking extra steps to ensure their safety.

The City Council authorized police this week to arrest students who bring to school objects that could be used as weapons, officials said.

The ordinance, which passed Tuesday, expands the definition of a weapon to include items that are otherwise legal but could be used to inflict physical harm, said Police Chief Kevin F. Coppinger.

Students could be arrested if they bring objects such as air guns, pellet guns, BB guns, fireworks, and even bats and clubs to school without a “legitimate purpose,’’ he said.

In the past, Coppinger said, police could only seize the weapons in question and summon offenders to court, allowing them to stay in school and possibly threaten or harm other students and staff. The ordinance allows police to act when they “come across a group of kids engaged in a fight or ready to fight,’’ he said.

School safety and emergency planning officer Robert Ferrari said that in the past three years police have visited schools several times for weapon-related incidents but have made only six arrests. He added that if the laws had been amended earlier, more arrests would have been made.

The ordinance “certainly gives us a little more power to say, ‘Look there’s no reason for you to have weapons on you, period. If you do, there will be swift and severe consequences,’ ’’ he said.

The change had been in the works for some time, officials said.

“We’re trying to be proactive,’’ Coppinger said. “We didn’t see an uptick in kids bringing weapons to school.’’

He said police will make arrests depending on an individual’s actions, motivations, and circumstances. “If a kid brought a souvenir bat and had all his buddies sign it in school, there’s nothing illegal about it,’’ he said.

But Carol Rose, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, said police should focus on students’ actions, rather than on “criminalizing objects that may have uses other than as weapons.’’

Rose, who had not read the ordinance and heard about it from a reporter, said: “Virtually any object, such as a shoe, could be used to attack another person. If the ordinance doesn’t clearly delineate specific weapons they [officials] have in mind, it has the potential to be overly broad.”

Mayor Edward J. Clancy Jr. said the ordinance gives police “another arrow in their quiver’’ and will protect people within the school system against those who “engage in egregious, dangerous, or antisocial behavior.’’

“A lot of these kids have hurdles enough to traverse without having to be looking over their shoulder,’’ Clancy said. “We don’t want anyone who’s coming to school for any illegitimate purpose to be there.’’

Essex District Attorney Jonathan W. Blodgett said the ordinance was adopted as Lynn and other urban areas see an increase in incidents in which students bring both conventional and unconventional weapons to school.

He would not speculate about how many such cases his office will prosecute. “Appropriate safeguards and remedies are in place to help students who make a genuine mistake,’’ Blodgett said.

Jayakrishna can be reached at [email protected].
 

Mark from MA

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Strange.....how's the baseball team gonna hit?

I'm guessing that if you bring your pellet/bb/paintball gun to any school in MA probably gonna have a problem already.....why is this something new? Did Lynn allow air rifles in class before or something? WTF.

I know one kid at our local high, that had a paintball gun in the trunk of his car and got royally screwed by the school nazi "zero tolerance" bullshit. They charged him and he's got record now....And I live out in the sticks.....

Christ....I'm not that old.... and I used to take my shotgun to school and leave it in the car so I could deer and pheasant hunt after school. What a criminal I must have been......
 
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That kinda sucks. I used to bring my paintball gun to school all the time and leave it in my car cause we used to play after school.

Hell, during deer season it was par for the course for kids to leave their hunting rifles in their vehicles during school. Seeing someone playing with a live round (ya know, twiddling it like a pencil) in class was pretty normal.

The times, they are a changin.
 
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The City Council authorized police this week to arrest students who bring to school objects that could be used as weapons, officials said.

That means no pencils, pens, books, shoes, jackets, belts, backpacks, lunchboxes, water bottles, pretty much any sports equipment, cars or keys. Looks like this is going to be a great year for learning at school in Lynn.
 

Rob

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“A lot of these kids have hurdles enough to traverse without having to be looking over their shoulder.."

Ban wedgies!

(They probably already count as bullying, but whatever...)

And 'we' continue to slide ever faster toward true pure Obomunism.
 

center442

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>snip<

He said police will make arrests depending on an individual’s actions, motivations, and circumstances. “If a kid brought a souvenir bat and had all his buddies sign it in school, there’s nothing illegal about it,’’ he said.

But Carol Rose, executive director of the American Civil Liberties Union of Massachusetts, said police should focus on students’ actions, rather than on “criminalizing objects that may have uses other than as weapons.’’

Rose, who had not read the ordinance and heard about it from a reporter, said: “Virtually any object, such as a shoe, could be used to attack another person. If the ordinance doesn’t clearly delineate specific weapons they [officials] have in mind, it has the potential to be overly broad.”

>snip<

Wow, color me surprised at that quote from the MA ACLU. Maybe they'll actually start putting that statement into practice. It would be even better if that attitude could infect Beacon Hill. Imagine if the government actually started holding people responsible for their actions instead of blaming inanimate objects for their behavior.

Well, I can dream, can't I? [wink]
 

cekim

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Well, I can dream, can't I? [wink]
That depends, did you submit your dream proposals for approval before-hand?

There may be "misinformation" in them and as such, they would be prohibited... [laugh]

I do wonder when all the liberal "free 'em all Deval" types are going to realize that it is their "pre-crime" policies that have created this prison state?

Ok, they will never admit to them as "their policies" despite the fact that they generally are, but more importantly, before we have the next civil war or home-grown prison/felon based insurgency, will we recognize our current path as un-sustainable and start re-thinking our laws, "zero tolerance" and sentencing guidelines?
 

gerrycaruso

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I have no problem with kids not being allowed to bring airguns to school. The days of bringing guns to school either for show and tell or to hunt after school are over. I don't like it but I understand why it's necessary.
 

Mark from MA

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I have no problem with kids not being allowed to bring airguns to school. The days of bringing guns to school either for show and tell or to hunt after school are over. I don't like it but I understand why it's necessary.

I don't like to feed into "zero tolerance" policies.....because they generally mean "zero common sense".....and you are just giving in to the communist scare tactic, sheepies out there......

If some kids gonna bring harm with weapons in a school they are gonna do it no matter what zero tolerance policy is in place. Obviously some kid that wants to play paintball after school and just has it locked in his trunk is a harm to no one.
 
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It was my understanding that bringing any type of "weapon" (air guns, airsoft guns, knives, etc.) was already illegal in MA. That's what our principal told us on the first day of freshman year. Punishment was a kick out of the school system.

He could've been lying out his ass - it wouldn't be the first time a Newton North administrator did.

In any case, anything these kids would do with these airguns/bb guns/etc. that would harm anyone is already against the rules. This isn't going to help at all.
 

appraiser

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any time an object that can be used as a weapon, even when it is not the designed purpose of that item is banned or restricted, people just go to the next easily obtainable object and adapt it.

Ban guns, knives and machetes become the weapon of choice, ban them then it is clubs and bats, ban them and it will be a roll of nickles in a sock, or a rock, or a sharpened pencil , a pen, whatever you can get your paws on to get the advantage over your opponent.

How about a belt? The people who complain about baggy pants down to a persons knees can't complain about a belt made of a chain, or cable, or rope, etc. Bullwhips may become stylish again!

I've used pencils, broken bottles, neckties and a few other at hand objects in a pinch. Using what you have when the SHTF also makes it hard to prove premeditation.
 

jaypap

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Pencils for stabbing could cause lead poisoning and paper clips with rubber bands could take out an eye.

All potential weapons.

Anyone ever hear of paper cuts? Oooh how those hurt and infection could cause death.
 

Bill Nance

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What's so stupid about this is that like most other laws concerned with "public safety" is that it's already not ok to bring a bb/pellet gun to school. I mean seriously, you think a kid bringing his crossman .22 c02 pistol to school isn't already going to get into trouble?

Same thing goes for clubs. Even 30 years ago if a teacher caught you walking around with a club at school you'd be asked some pointed questions and possibly in a lot of trouble depending on the answers.

I'm all for a constitutional amendment on the state and federal levels: For any bill you pass you have to abolish three laws with the same bill.

90% of what's on the books is either redundant, stupid or infringing on basic freedoms.
 

BerettaOrSig

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I've seen several students at Middlesex Community College carrying knives or "multi tools" even some in plain view. They're not supposed to but were never hassled to my knowledge. I don't know if that changed after someone "Paul ___" held a knife to Matt ____'s "Jedi Jew" (yes he calls himself that) throat over the use of a stupid pingpong table in the lounge!

I wasn't there, but I feel rather confident between my bag full of books being thrown and an eyeful of mace I could have helped Matt instead of standing there or running like people do [rolleyes]

Paul was expelled and charged... since then one of his friends stole Matt's jacket.

People suck, you really gotta watch yourself... and it is even worse when you have a "restricted" Class A LTC so if your life is threatened you have the means to defend yourself with prejudice... but only if you're home or otherwise have a good reason as to why the firearm was on you! [sad2]
 
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I graduated from Lynn Tech in 2002 (so not that long ago). we had crossing guard (security monitor) that year that got beamed in the head by a frutopia bottle that was thrown at him. guy got nocked cold and draged away in an ambulance.
EVERYTHING is a weapon, I got attacked by a kid with a math book once in the hallway. this solves nothing.
 

cekim

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I graduated from Lynn Tech in 2002 (so not that long ago). we had crossing guard (security monitor) that year that got beamed in the head by a frutopia bottle that was thrown at him. guy got nocked cold and draged away in an ambulance.
EVERYTHING is a weapon, I got attacked by a kid with a math book once in the hallway. this solves nothing.
Belts, shoelaces, toothbrushes, socks&quarters, trashcans... Ask me how I know?[laugh] (and that's just elementary school... )[rofl]
 

RKG

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If the standard for banned items is "things that could be used as weapons," I guess the kids are going to have go to school barefoot.

There was a time when I put a bunch of folks in jail for A&B/DW, to wit: a shod foot.

Going to be tough going to school in January.
 
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Students should be put under general anesthesia while in school. It will surely prevent fighting, bullying, and other forms of unwanted behavior!
 

Prepper

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Students should be put under general anesthesia while in school.

Some of them already are! Although they don't call it "anesthesia" but instead have fancier names like ritalin.

Never mind what the kids can bring that can be weapons. The school also provides weapons. Those desks and chairs are heavy and have metal legs. Imagine getting hit over the head with one of those.
 
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Mayor Edward J. Clancy Jr. said the ordinance gives police “another arrow in their quiver’’ and will protect people within the school system against those who “engage in egregious, dangerous, or antisocial behavior.’’

Sure.. They get freakin' arrows, and the poor kids can't even use a stick to defend themselves?
 
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Burn all the confiscated pot and pipe the smoke into the classrooms.
No more violence!

I got dibs on the Twinkie concession!

Ah, you forgot this is PRM, they no longer allow any sweet snacks in the schools. [shocked] You know, for the children. My daughter goes to Lynn Classical, they took all the candy,ice cream and soda machines out last year.
 

terraformer

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If the standard for banned items is "things that could be used as weapons," I guess the kids are going to have go to school barefoot.

There was a time when I put a bunch of folks in jail for A&B/DW, to wit: a shod foot.

Going to be tough going to school in January.

Hey, all they need is a school that is miraculously uphill from their home in the morning and downhill from their home in the afternoon and they are all set. God knows we have plenty of driving snow in these parts. [smile]
 
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