A California high school teacher, who also serves as a reserve police officer, accidentally fired a gun in a classroom, injuring three students.
While teaching a gun safety lesson for his Administration of Justice class, Dennis Alexander accidentally shot at the ceiling. As a result of the shot, fragmented pieces of the bullet ricocheted off the ceiling and were lodged in the neck of a 17-year-old student at Seaside High School, reported KSBW.
Two other students were injured when pieces of the ceiling fell to the ground; however, the Seaside Police Department said no one suffered "serious injuries."
Fermin Gonzales, father to the 17-year-old boy who was injured in the neck, said no one checked to see if any students were injured after the shooting. Immediately after the accidental discharge of Alexander’s weapon, the school day resumed as normal, and Seaside Police Department officers launched an investigation.
It was not until his son came home with blood on his shirt that Gonzalez realized he had been injured.
The student's parents rushed him to a hospital for X-rays.
"He's shaken up, but he's going to be OK," Gonzales told KSBW. "I'm just pretty upset that no one told us anything and we had to call the police ourselves to report it."
The teacher was about to use the gun for a demonstration about how to disarm someone, and was checking to make sure it wasn’t loaded, according to Gonzales.
Alexander was placed on administrative leave from his teaching position at Seaside High School, and he was also placed on administrative leave at the Sand City Police Department.
The Superintendent's Office sent a letter to parents reading:
"We want to make you aware of an accident that occurred in the Administration of Justice class today at Seaside High School. As some of you may know, the teacher is a reserve police officer. Today, during class, the teacher accidentally discharged his firearm during a lesson while it was pointed at the ceiling. Debris from the ceiling then fell. Upon learning of the incident, our Human Resources department, school site administration and the Seaside Police Department immediately began investigating the incident, including interviewing students in the class. We will also have counseling services available for students. Due to the nature of this personnel incident, we are unable to share any other details. The teacher has been placed on administrative leave for the duration of the on-going investigation. The safety of your student is always our top priority, and we will continue to remain vigilant in our efforts to keep them safe while they are under our care."