BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Baltimore County Police have identified the man arrested in an incident at Perry Hall High School where he appeared to have a gun in a video.
Authorities say 18-year-old Darren Keith Bennett was taken into custody Friday night. The weapon depicted in the video was found in Bennett’s home and has been identified as an airsoft weapon, which is non-lethal but resembles a deadly weapon.
Detectives tell WJZ someone saw Bennett with the weapon and called the police.
Baltimore County Schools worked with police to investigate the incident. School resource officers, who officials say were unaware of the fight, discovered the scene while looking through surveillance video.
Police say they aren’t searching for any additional suspects at this time, but the others involved have also been identified and criminal charges are pending.
There was an increased police presence at the school Friday morning even though, as a letter from the principal states, officials “have not been made aware of any credible threat toward any of our students or staff.”
Baltimore Police say they received a call about the fight just before noon Thursday. They say they are aware of the videos and are using them to assist in the investigation.
“That is the concern, the possibility that this could have been a lot more violent incident than it was. The fact that somebody walks up to this fight and has a weapon in his hand,” said Cpl. Shawn Vinson of the Baltimore County Police Department.
Both parents and students said they were very concerned. WJZ spoke to parents dropping their kids off at school Friday morning.
“That scared me. I’m almost ready to go in there and get my son out of school,” said Tony Gonzolez, who says his son is a junior at the school.
Baltimore County Councilman David Marks posted this statement on his Facebook page:
“I’ve had it.
Any student who carries a gun on school property—or a replica of a gun—should be expelled and charged as an adult, period. End of story.
Unfortunately, we may never know what will happen, as I’ve come to expect investigations where we never seemed to hear of outcomes, and where students who create these problems are shielded from public attention.
I’m angry. I graduated from Perry Hall High School. I’ve been its biggest booster. Just this week, I shared news of the band’s trip to Disney World. Unfortunately, all the good work done by the overwhelming number of outstanding students is overshadowed by the small number of troublemakers and would-be criminals.
It’s time for the school system to step up and do everything possible to guarantee a culture of discipline at Perry Hall High School—and across Baltimore County.”