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Bozeman Police Captain talks about Gallatin High School gun incident

Posted at 1:51 PM, May 14, 2024
and last updated 2024-05-14 16:06:26-04

BOZEMAN — After a gun was reported on campus at Gallatin High School last week, many questions remain unanswered.

On May 8, a Gallatin High School student reportedly brought the weapon to school and threatened another student with it. The gun was later found off-campus by School Resource Officers and school administration.

Captain Dana McNeil of the Bozeman Police Department spoke with MTN on Monday about the incident.

He says, "The investigators involved with this are talking to a number of kids involved in the incident and ultimately there will be some decisions about charging them, but yes, the school is looking at disciplinary actions against the students."

A Bozeman Police Department press release says all students involved were removed for the remainder of the school year, and any further disciplinary action will be determined after the investigation.

McNeil credits the School Resource Officers (SROs) at Gallatin High School for a quick response to the threat.

"When an SRO receives this kind of information, they’re trained to react immediately and take it very seriously. I’m really proud of their work in this case because that’s exactly what they did," he says.

The captain also explains how police handle victim-based crimes like this: "Whenever anybody is a victim of a crime as in this case, we will refer them to the Victim Advocates Office who will put them in contact with those types of services, counseling, help, and also guide them through the legal process."

But this situation left many wondering what role the parents played in the ordeal.

Further details are pending investigation, but Captain McNeil says, "In situations like this, a parent could be held responsible if they participated in some sort of gross negligence or something like that. But a lot of times when we talk to parents, they are as equally frustrated with the situation as we are."

"This case is still under investigation and we’re working on it every day, and hopefully we’ll have more information we can provide to the public soon," McNeil adds.