Elizabeth Entenman
March 14, 2018 7:48 am
Giles Clarke / Getty Images

Today marks the one-month anniversary of the devastating shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. In the month since the tragic shooting, gun control advocates and opponents have argued over how to address the issue of gun violence in schools. But as arguments continue, sadly, so does the violence. In February, a teacher was arrested for reportedly firing a gun inside a classroom at Dalton High School in Georgia. And on Tuesday, March 13th, a Seaside High teacher accidentally fired a gun inside of a classroom in Northern California.

The Seaside High teacher, Dennis Alexander, is also a reserve officer with the Sand City Police Department. Alexander was teaching at Seaside High when he reportedly pointed his gun at the ceiling and accidentally shot it. A 17-year-old student was injured by a bullet fragment that ricocheted off the ceiling.

“It’s the craziest thing. It could have been very bad,” Fermin Gonzales, the student’s father, told KSBW.

Gonzales clarified that Alexander was going to use the gun to demonstrate how to disarm someone. He was checking to make sure his gun wasn’t loaded when it accidentally fired.

“I think a lot of questions on parents’ minds are, why a teacher would be pointing a loaded firearm at the ceiling in front of students,” Monterey Peninsula Unified School District Superintendent PK Diffenbaugh told KSBW. “Clearly in this incident protocols were not followed.”

Gonzales also said that the school did not check the other students for injuries or notify parents right away.

Alexander was placed on administrative leave from both his teaching position at Seaside High School and the Sand City Police Department.

We hope this kind of accident never happens again.