A fifth-grade boy at Shades Mountain Elementary School in Hoover on Monday found a loaded handgun in the bathroom at Blue Ridge Park next to the school, Hoover police said.
Several kids saw the 9mm Glock handgun, and one of them eventually tossed it into the woods, police Capt. Gregg Rector said in a news release today. One of the boys told his parents, who notified police, and officers found the gun and determined it had not been reported stolen.
Shortly afterward, a Bluff Park man who owns the gun called police after he realized he had left the gun in the restroom inadvertently when he and his family visited the park, Rector said.
“Although this situation could have been tragic, investigators determined there was no criminal intent by the owner,” Rector said. No charges were filed.
“This incident serves as a reminder that gun owners must act responsibly while exercising their right to carry a weapon,” Rector said. “We would also encourage parents to discuss firearms safety with their children, even if there are no weapons in their home. Encourage children to ‘Don’t touch; go tell an adult’ if they locate objects that might cause them harm.”
Hoover school resource officers also are taking this opportunity to speak with students about the importance of notifying an adult in such situations, Rector said.