Southern California -- this just in

« Previous Post | L.A. NOW Home | Next Post »

Gardena High School violated district's weapons-check policy, top LAUSD official says

Gardena High School, where police said a student accidentally discharged a firearm in a classroom and wounded two fellow classmates Tuesday, violated school-district policy because it did not conduct random weapons searches every day, incoming LAUSD Supt. John Deasy said Wednesday morning.

Deasy said a review by district administrators showed school-district policy required random weapons searches daily.

At Gardena High School, Deasy said, "that did not occur."

"I can't tell you that that would have discovered this individual," he said, but the district will be interviewing staff responsible for security at the school to determine why the policy was not being followed.

Deasy made the comments outside the high school before a meeting with parents. School and district administrators planned to discuss Tuesday's shooting, the condition of the wounded students and security at the school, among other topics.

On Wednesday morning, staff members searched backpacks and scanned many students with metal detectors as they entered the school gates. A long line of students snaked a few hundred feet outside the school, moving slowly before the morning bell rang.

Students said that before Tuesday's shooting, weapons checks rarely took place, though school officials would routinely screen students for dress-code violations, like low-cut shirts.

Cortney Hullaby, an 11th-grader, said that last week one of her teachers asked students if they felt safe in any of their classes.

"I said no, because you never know what someone has in their backpack," she said, "So I don't trust anyone."


Gardena shooting victims 'fortunate' to be alive

Random weapon searches occurred 'once in a blue moon,' Gardena student says

Photos: Gardena High shooting

-- Tony Barboza in Gardena

Photo: The incoming head of the Los Angeles Unified School District, John Deasy, speaks to the media while students line up for a security check upon their arrival at Gardena High School on Wednesday. Credit: Nick Ut / Associated Press

Comments () | Archives (60)

Note to self: If I ever live near a HS where gun searching is common practice - its time to move to a safer location.

Blaming LAUSD? I'd like an investigation into the parents. Were they watching the kid, searching his room, etc. In other words, could they have known their kid had a gun?

And where is the money suppose to come from to do these random checks?

Did Gardena violate district policy? Who knows. But let;s face it..the ultimate, only person responsible for that shooting is the young man who brought that gun to school.

They should do more of the searches on the students that are high risk. I know the ACLU will be all over that because it might seem discriminatory, but the fact of the mater is, they're going to have to criminally profile these kids. I bet it's not hard to distinguish the average student from the a-hole gang member student. Those high risk students and their friends will be the ones in need of being searched.

I'm sure at least one child was run over in a cross-walk in the last 4 hours. Schools are not the only unsafe place and guns are not the only weapons. Meanwhile, 100 TSA agents are sitting at LAX airport confiscating toothpaste and water bottles.

Blame game is all they're playing. Even if they did do a random search yesterday, who can say they would have caught this kid with a gun in his back pack? and where are they going to find staff and money to pay them to search every single day? Us taxpayers of course. It was just an unfortunate incident that happened and we just need to pray it doesn't happen again anywhere for the sake of our children.

Hey Deasy, guess what you friggin' idiot..... We are a high school in a rough area of Los Angeles and we don't have enough money to keep the teachers we have, let alone hire staff to do searches. Idiot.

This guy Deasy is an idiot. His first act, before he is sworn in as superintendant of LAUSD, will cost the district millions of dollars. How would you like to be the lawyer who gets to handle this case? Before there is even an investigation, the defendant admits his guilt.....Talk about a slam-dunk.....Guess who will be paying for this!!!!.....Maybe the taxpayers?....Of course Deasy doesn't care, it's not his money, he gets paid by us!!!If this fool was the CEO of a large corporation and pulled a boneheaded stunt like this he would be fired instantly. The LAUSD will probably give him a raise, with taxpayer's money, of course!!

Guns are made of plastic, but Risk Prevention does visual check of all bags, lunch boxes etc. The hand helds are also good for the personal check.

And who is supposed to keep watch over the schools to make sure they're doing what they're supposed to do? Isn't that the job of central admin? Seems to me there are enough administrators in the district that someone should be making sure policies are followed.

Of course they blame the teachers and staff! HEY! You try containing 45 kids in a classroom. Then, take away 40% of the clerical and custodial staff,cut successful programs and see what you come up with at the school site. Does the public even know that Special Education students are given far more chances than the regular students? Couple that with the ridiculous behavior that pass for parenting skills, and you have a dangerous mix. ABSURD!!!!


He is a special ed student who was being bullied at school. Don't make comments regarding situations you know nothing about.

Posted by: RatdogCA | January 19, 2011 at 09:10 AM
17 years old and a sophomore. Not too bright.

I sure hope that the kid and his parents are charged with something serious.

there is no reason to take a weapon to school.

they should talk with school admin if there is a problem.

they should move somewhere that their safety is not in jeopardy while in school.

If everyone went to a private school or moved out of the area...then the crappy schools would close.
You can't just tote a gun around!!!

I hear the term "innercity" being used to indicate that schools that are not in the "innercity" would not have this problem.

One word that proves that idea is absolutely wrong.


A school in an affluent area.

Guns can appear anywhere.

That's bs- leave it to the new superintendent to blame the school- he'll use that as an excuse to go charter

It's simply the result of living in a society where easy access to guns is a right. There are guns everywhere; they're going to make their way into a classroom.

Chalk it up to a side effect of the second amendment.

I know a teacher at Gardena HS that has been telling me for the past two years that a shooting or a gang riot will occur someday soon at this school. Students that are disruptive in class are left with no discipline and are allowed to hang around school. No effort is made to get the disruptive students back into the classroom. As long as these students show up for school, the school will get their money regardless if the student is in class or not. Busing kids in from other areas of the city has created racial tension inside the classroom. Students fear for their own safety as they attend classes daily. So it does not surprise me this kid brought a gun into the classroom. If I had a child that had to go to Gardena HS, I would find any other alternative rather than subject my child to that school.

Martial arts classes in school would increase the self confidence of bullying victims, teach them how to protect themselves without the need for guns, and make them less attractive to bullies. As a bonus, martial arts would reduce childhood obesity.

Ok. does the title not contradict itself. If it is random, why would it be done everyday? and how can they gauarntee they would have caught him brining in the gun.

Well Well Well....Lookie here!after the shooting incident now the district is pointing fingers........If they added more school police maybe this wouldnt have happened. The district knows what schools are "troubled" schools and which ones are not. Before pointing fingers you should look at your policy for safety first.

I have a problem with Supt. Deasy addressing the media with his arms crossed...body language says a lot...

Welcome to LAUSD, Supt. Deasy! You're not in Kansas/Santa Monica anymore...

Years ago schools had to do away with lockers because a few kid abused the use of them. This is a huge school and only a few security folks are employed to check the students. Maybe backpacks need more careful scrutiny and students need to be made to feel they can "blow the whistle" if they see or hear that a gun or guns are on campus. The safety of students and staff should always be the top priority on any campus. Beginning to blame this or that doesn't result in positive steps toward student staff safety. Get simple positive steps in place and work on it daily. My best to the staff and student body of this school.

Random gun checks -never.

« | 1 2 3 | »


Recommended on Facebook


In Case You Missed It...


About L.A. Now
L.A. Now is the Los Angeles Times’ breaking news section for Southern California. It is produced by more than 80 reporters and editors in The Times’ Metro section, reporting from the paper’s downtown Los Angeles headquarters as well as bureaus in Costa Mesa, Long Beach, San Diego, San Francisco, Sacramento, Riverside, Ventura and West Los Angeles.
Have a story tip for L.A. Now?
Please send to newstips@latimes.com
Can I call someone with news?
Yes. The city desk number is (213) 237-7847.


Get Alerts on Your Mobile Phone

Sign me up for the following lists: