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Students injured when Monterey County teacher accidentally fires handgun in class

Students injured when Monterey County teacher accidentally fires handgun in class

A California teacher armed with a handgun injured three students when he accidentally fired it at the ceiling during a gun safety class.

The teacher was identified by police as Dennis Alexander, who teaches math as well as a course in the administration of justice. Sand City Police Chief Brian Ferrante told KSBW that he's concerned about why Alexander, a reserve officer with the department, had a loaded gun in the classroom.

However, the student's father, Fermin Gonzales, told KSBW 8 that it was his understanding that fragments from the bullet ricocheted off the ceiling and lodged in the boy's neck.

Alexander has been placed on administrative leave from his teaching job, a spokesperson with the Monterey Peninsula Unified School District said.

The student injured during the California teacher's lecture has been released from the emergency room a couple of hours later. Upon learning of the incident, our Human Resources department, school site administration and the Seaside Police Department immediately began investigating the incident, including interviewing students in the class.

'It could have been very bad, ' Gonzales said. "The safety of your student is always our top priority, and we will continue to remain vigilant in our efforts to keep them safe while they are under our care", the Superintendent's Office wrote in a letter to the parents of the students.

Exactly why the teacher was displaying the weapon at all was not entirely clear.

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"We're looking into any violation of city ordinance or the penal code and we'll determine whether or not there are any applicable charges", Pridgen postulated.

According to The Californian, guns and other weapons are not allowed on the school's campus but there are exceptions for law enforcement.

Dennis Alexander of Seaside City Council.

Alexander had been a reserve Sand City police officer for 11 years.

He adds that, "Clearly, we will revisit this incident to ensure that something like this would never happen again".

The incident occurred amid nation-wide debate on whether teachers should be allowed to carry firearms for the better protection of students, in the wake of Florida School shooting last month. Trump has raised the idea of arming teachers in schools, arguing that it would deter potential school shooters.