April 08, 2020

Students charged after BB gun scare

DIXFIELD – Two Dirigo High School students face charges after they were found in possession of a BB pistol in an incident that prompted officials to lock down the school.

The incident, which took place 30 minutes after classes ended Tuesday afternoon, caused a scare in the wake of recent shootings at other schools in Pennsylvania, Colorado and Wisconsin.

The incident at Dirigo High involved two teenagers who were showing off the gun to friends, police said. Nobody was hurt or threatened, but a 16-year-old Rumford boy and a 15-year-old Dixfield boy were charged with terrorizing with a firearm, a Class C felony, said Dixfield police Sgt. Mark Dow.

The teens were released to their parents and are scheduled to be arraigned on Nov. 13 in a juvenile session at Rumford District Court.

When school officials first received a report of a man armed with a handgun near the school, they sent a small group of students back inside and locked down the school for 30 minutes.

It turned out the two students who were charged had gone off school property after school Tuesday afternoon to get the gun from a friend. They returned to the school to show it to other friends, but did not threaten anyone, said Superintendent Tom Ward.

Dixfield Police Chief Richard A. Pickett said the BB gun looked the real thing.

“If we had seen it out when we arrived, we would have considered it a deadly force situation and acted appropriately,” Pickett said.

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