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Backpack with handguns found at elementary school

Posted at 9:57 AM, Feb 22, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-22 23:26:23-05

Students found a backpack with two handguns at Nash Elementary School Tuesday.

According to Amphitheater Unified School District spokeswoman Amy Sharpe, police are investigating the incident. 


JUST IN: @AmphiSchools spokesperson says the backpack was found in the school hallway with 2 handguns inside @kgun9

— Priscilla KGUN9 (@PriscillaCasper) February 22, 2017

Tucson police Sgt. Kimberly Bay says a student mistakenly grabbed the wrong backpack from a parent's car. It belonged to dad or stepdad. No one was injured in the incident.

Nash Elementary School Principal Bob Hehli says one of the two handguns was loaded. 

"She is a great kid, great kid that made an honest mistake, felt terrible once she realized what had happened," said Hehli.

The school is located at 515 W. Kelso Street.

Here is the text of a recorded message that went out to parents:

Hello, this is Bob Hehli, principal of Nash Elementary School. I wanted to let you know about an incident that happened at our school today. This afternoon after school, a few students found a backpack with weapons on our campus and reported it to us. At no time were any of our students in danger and we are currently working with the Tucson Police Department to investigate. We encourage you to take this opportunity to talk to your child about being safe and remind them that if they ever see or hear anything suspicious, they should tell a trusted adult immediately. If your child has any information regarding this incident, please call me 696-6440, or call the Tucson Police Department at 88-CRIME. Thank you. 
On Wednesday afternoon, Hehli released a second message, saying that the student who brought in the backpack will face disciplinary consequences. Here is the text:
Hello, this is Bob Hehli, principal of Nash Elementary School. I wanted to give you an update on my message from yesterday about the backpack found on campus. After a police investigation, they were able to identify the registered owner of the weapons who is a parent of a child at our school. The child mistakenly grabbed her father’s backpack, thinking it was hers, unaware of the contents of the bag. Although we are glad that this was simply a child’s honest mistake and no one was hurt, the child will have consequences as outlined in our school’s Code of Conduct for bringing weapons to school. The safety of our students is our number one priority. Thank you for supporting our school community. If you have any other questions, or want to speak to me, you may call me directly at 696-6451. Thank you. You may press the * key to repeat this message.
Tucson Police say this is a teaching moment for children, that if you see something suspicious, say something. Also, for parents to remember to keep their weapons locked and stored safely if children are around.