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Police worry as gunfire erupts at football game
Henry Pierson Curtis | Sentinel Staff Writer
September 6, 2007
Threats of gun violence have spread to Orange County Public School campuses and events with the school year only 3 weeks old.

Friday night, hundreds of spectators escaped injury at the Florida Citrus Bowl when gunfire erupted after the prep football matchup between Jones and Evans high schools.

It was the latest incident of celebratory gunfire -- a risky act becoming common at athletic events and holidays in Central Florida.

The danger is obvious.

"Think about it. This is only the third week of school and the city of Orlando has already found two firearms" on students, said Sgt. Stan Klem, referring to a pistol seized last week from an Edgewater High School student. "That's something we focus on. The safety of the schools is our paramount concern."

Despite safely disarming two students so far, Klem said without doubt that other students carrying guns on campus eluded detection. What's happening reflects the growing illegal use of guns across the county where murders reached 121 last year, a record, police officials say.

The worst school-related incident so far happened last winter at a previous showdown between Orange County's traditional rivals, Jones and Evans high schools.

More than 100 bullets were fired after the schools' annual basketball game in January. No one was injured in the crowd of at least 400 teens and young adults when the bursts of muzzle flashes lit up a parking lot on South Orange Blossom Trail.

On Friday night at the Citrus Bowl, two shots exploded about 10:30 p.m. as the crowd of at least 3,000 attending the annual "Soul Bowl" left the stadium, according to Orlando police reports.

The shots came from a parking lot on the east side of the stadium. Spectators pointed out a group of teens they thought had a gun, an incident report states.

Police officers working security at the football game ordered the five teens to lie face down on the pavement, where each was patted down, the report states.

A 9 mm HiPoint pistol was found in the pants pocket of Frederick Wright, 16, a Jones High School student, an arrest report states.

The pistol was loaded with nine bullets and had jammed after being fired, the report states. A second magazine held eight bullets, the report states.

"That was a mistake my child made . . . and he will overcome this situation," said Wright's mother, who did not give her name.

Wright faces expulsion from the school system if administrators determine he had a firearm at the school-sanctioned event.

After his arrest, he was sent to the state Juvenile Assessment Center in Orlando on charges of possession of a firearm by a minor, possession of a weapon on school grounds and possession of a concealed firearm, the report states.

As a minor, he faces a maximum of three days in juvenile detention if it was his first firearm-related offense.
 

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More than 100 bullets were fired after the schools' annual basketball game in January. No one was injured in the crowd of at least 400 teens and young adults when the bursts of muzzle flashes lit up a parking lot on South Orange Blossom Trail.
:shock:
 

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His first mistake was carrying a firearm, illegally.

His second mistake was discharging that firearm.

His third mistake was carry a Hi-point pistol :)
 

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I am speachless!!!! :shock:
 

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"That was a mistake my child made . . . and he will overcome this situation," said Wright's mother, who did not give her name.
And that right there folks is why there's no more personal responsibility in this country anymore... It is being bred into new generations.
 

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Did you expect less from the public school system? These are fine examples of our next generation of soldiers, workers, and bueracrats. Ja.

We need a smiley that is doing the Roman straight-arm salute.
 
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