Witnesses recount details of EHS incident as officials withhold details

The Butler County Attorney’s Office has received a request for charges of Defacing Identification Marks of a Firearm, a Level 10 nonperson felony, and Criminal Use of a Weapon, a Class A nonperson misdemeanor against a juvenile, who was born May 15, 1997.

While the school district isn’t saying much at this point about the student who brought a gun to El Dorado High School Monday, parents and students are still talking about it.

Ben Ketley’s daughter was sitting two seats away from the student who had the gun.

He heard the story from his daughter when he swung by her mother’s house to drop off a movie for her.

“Before I could tell her I had the movie, she said ‘guess what happened,’” he said. “She said the school officer came in and pulled him out of class. She said he had a gun in his backpack.”

She also said he had been posting photos of the gun on Facebook.

“She said it weirded her out that he was sitting two seats away with a handgun in his backpack,” he said.

According to Ketley, the incident occurred about 2 to 2:30 p.m. According to the El Dorado Police Reports, a weapons violation as reported at the high school on Monday at 3:01 p.m.

A notice was sent out from the district notifying parents of the incident and that everyone was safe at about 4 p.m.

“I was livid,” Ketley said of the incident. “I graduated from El Dorado so to me El Dorado is a nice bedroom community and it’s one of those things where you don’t think this will ever happen here. The fact he actually posted (photos on Facebook) and the kids all knew about it or knew that he had threatened to do it. It seems to me that should have been handled way before that.”

He did say he understood anyone could sneak something into a school.

“I don’t expect any school or business to frisk everyone to make sure they don’t have anything with them,” he said. “When there are obvious signs I think it is a little negligent not to pull him in and question him.”

He said his daughter wasn’t nervous about going back to school, although he siad she wasn’t joking when she told him about the incident.

“Unlike my generation, they take it lightly,” he said. “I was scared for her to go back to school. I know a lot going on around the country is copy cat stuff with kids wanting attention.”

According to Police Chief Tom Boren, the student was taken into custody after a fellow student saw the student’s Facebook photo with the gun and alerted the school’s police officer.

The school district declined to comment, stating “this in an ongoing investigation and a student matter.”

In a statement released by the district on Tuesday, they said: “We have participated in an initial administrative debriefing to assess our response to the situation. Our school police department has been in contact with and continues to coordinate with other local agencies on this situation. We take the responsibility to provide safe schools seriously. If there are improvements we can make to our protocols, you can be assured we will not hesitate to implement them. We are thankful that we were able to report the weapon was recovered without incident and the student is no longer in our schools. We appreciate support from parents encouraging students to speak up and never compromise their safety or that of others. Their efforts along with the diligence of our staff and students contributed to this situation being resolved quickly and without incident.”