VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WAVY) – Two seventh grade Virginia Beach students have learned their fates Tuesday morning after they were suspended for shooting airsoft gun.
During a hearing Tuesday morning, Aidan Clark and Khalid Caraballo were given long-term suspensions in a unanimous vote. The suspensions will last until June, but a hearing will be held in January to determine if they will be allowed back in school.
Their parents told WAVY News’ Andy Fox their children were expelled, but when Fox looked at the official letter from the school, he found they were long-term suspensions and not expulsions. Their parents still feel as though they were expelled.
Clark was offered the option of attending an alternative school, but his father, Tim, told WAVY News’ Andy Fox he will be homeschooled.
Caraballo will attend an alternative school.
Like thousands of others in Hampton Roads, Khalid Caraballo plays with airsoft guns. Caraballo and his friend Aidan were suspended because they shot two other friends who were with them while playing with the guns as they waited for the school bus.
The two seventh graders say they never went to the bus stop; they fired the airsoft guns while on Caraballo’s private property.
Aidan’s father, Tim Clark, told WAVY.com what happened next lacks commons sense. The children were suspended for possession, handling and use of a firearm.
Khalid’s mother, Solangel Caraballo, thinks it is ridiculous the Virginia Beach City Public School System suspended her 13-year-old son and Aidan because they were firing a spring-driven airsoft gun on the Caraballo’s posted private property. “My son is my private property. He does not become the school’s property until he goes to the bus stop, gets on the bus, and goes to school.”
The bus stop in question is 70 yards from the Caraballo’s front yard.
Solangel Caraballo was not at home when this incident occurred. She was taking her young son to a Head Start class. She left her 16-year -old daughter in charge.
Khalid and Aiden aren’t only suspended, they were recommended to be expelled for a year for “possession, handling and use of a firearm.”
This story that addresses Zero Tolerance extending to private property began on Sept. 9 with a 911 call from a concerned citizen.
A neighbor saw Khalid shooting the airsoft gun in his front yard. She told the dispatcher, “He is pointing the gun, and it looks like there’s a target in a tree in his front yard”.
WAVY.com located the 911 caller and spoke to her. She confirmed Khalid was taking target practice using a zombie hunter airsoft gun to kill the zombies. There was also a net behind the target to catch the plastic pellets.
Read more: wavy.com