Salem teacher on leave after students report him carrying gun on campus

Image: KPTV

Sprague High School officials said a teacher was placed on administrative leave after he was caught with a gun on campus Friday.

According to a message sent out to parents by principal Craig Swanson, a few students told the administration they saw Richard Johnston, a teacher, with a gun.

School officials said, while Johnston had a concealed weapon permit, his actions went against school policy. The policy states: “An employee shall not possess, transmit, sell, or in any way dispense any firearm (including lookalikes) or other implement which could be considered dangerous or used as a weapon while on district property or at school-sponsored activities.”

FOX 12 spoke to a few parents from the school who said this is a ‘controversial issue.’

One parent said, if the individual is trained and they have a permit, they should be allowed to carry a concealed weapon on campus.

“Does a ‘no weapon’ sign stop a bank robber?” parent Bryan Dehut said. “Does it stop anything, any type of action? No, but as long as we’re prepared for it, it should absolutely be allowed,”

Other parents disagreed. Referring to Johnston, another parent said, “I really don’t think he should have had it. It could’ve gotten into the wrong hands.”

FOX 12 tried reaching out to Johnston, but he did not respond.

District officials are not saying if the gun was loaded. According to administrators, Johnston will remain on paid leave until further notice.

Copyright 2017 KPTV-KPDX Broadcasting Corporation. All rights reserved.


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