A Newton County Theme School third grader was suspended Monday for accidentally bringing an unloaded pellet gun to school and his family is accusing the school of punishing the 8-year-old boy for doing the right thing and telling his teacher the gun was in his book bag.
Kristy Berry, the child's mother, spoke to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, telling them that her son did the right thing by turning in his weapon when he realized he had left it in his book bag after a weekend stay with his grandfather.
The boy was suspended for no less than 10 days and is scheduled to appear before a tribunal on Oct. 31. She said the school resource officer told her son he had broken the law, according to her interview with the AJC.
Though it may seem an extreme punishment for what Berry said as even the school principal referred to as an accident, Newton County has a zero-tolerance polity, no matter the circumstances.
"The student was disciplined according to the rules listed in the handbook," said public relations director Sherri Davis-Viniard in an email Friday. "Those rules are very clearly stated and are covered by Georgia law. Any weapon that propels - meaning any sort of gun, to include a BB gun - must be reported to law enforcement. The school administrators did exactly as they were required to do."