Parents Furious After Photographer Accidentally Drops Gun At Queens School
NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Parents at P.S. 60 in Woodhaven, Queens were furious to learn someone dropped a loaded gun at the elementary school Wednesday morning.
As CBS 2’s Dick Brennan reported, police said Richard Repetti, a photographer, had come to the school to take pictures when a .38-caliber handgun fell out of his ankle holster in the lobby.
“What about if a child would find it?” said parent Jany Hidalgo. “What about it fell and something went off on that gun?”
Repetti did not even know the gun had fallen. Sources told CBS 2 a school staff member heard the gun clatter onto the floor and picked it up.
“A kid could have picked it up, God forbid, and shoot another kid” said parent Maria Yournet. “That’s scary now.”
Police said Repetti owns a photography company, and was licensed to carry the gun on business. But was bringing the weapon into a school permissible?
Sources told CBS 2 that is a gray area, and Repetti will not be charged with any crime. But parents still were not happy at all, and children were shocked too.
“I was surprised, because I really thought this was a safe school too,” said student Valentina Gutierrez, “And it’s a good thing that we have good teachers here.”
“Her teachers didn’t say anything to me really, and I thought it was a safe school,” said parent Claudia Gutierrez.
Gutierrez and other parents said they knew nothing about the incident until they checked their children’s backpacks to find a letter from the principal, which insisted that all students and staff were safe at all times.
“I’m really happy they didn’t tell me that there was a guy in the school with a gun, and my daughter – I’m worried,” said parent Freddy Hidalgo.
Police said a “carry business license” allows people like Repetti to carry a concealed handgun. It is usually issued to business owners who have been robbed or carry lots of cash.
But parents said a gun should never be brought inside a school.
“I’m a parent; love my daughter,” Freddy Hidalgo said. “With everything that’s going on in the world nowadays, you’ve got to be on top of stuff like this.”
Police said Repetti was wearing a worn-out holster, which may have led to the gun falling out. His gun has been seized, and he will have to appeal to the firearm licensing section to get it back.
Repetti did not respond to CBS 2’s calls for comment.
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