CHESTERFIELD, VA—An 8-year-old student faces criminal charges after police say he brought a knife to his elementary school in Chesterfield County.
The student was found with a 3-inch folding knife Ettrick Elementary, Chesterfield County Police said.
The boy was reportedly showing the knife to other students, but did not threaten anyone with the weapon.
The student has been charged with possession of a weapon on school property.
"It's kind of shocking, because he's so young, and it's like what can you really do for an 8-year-old," said Ashanti Muhammad, a parent of a child at Ettrick Elementary. "What's putting him in a juvenile system really going to do?"
The school wouldn't release any information on the child's punishment, but if convicted, the charged carries up to a year in jail and up to a $2,500 fine.
The Chesterfield County School system released the following statement:
"We take very seriously our responsibility to provide a safe and supportive learning environment that is free from disruption. Students who violate student conduct regulations are subject to suspension and/or expulsion, and, if the offense is a violation of the law, to prosecution.
To protect students' rights to privacy, the Congress of the United States has enacted the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). This law prohibits school divisions from releasing certain student information, including whether any disciplinary action has been taken, without the express written permission of parents or guardians."
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