Police find girl with gun in backpack at Gateway High in Clovis

A student at Gateway High in Clovis was arrested Friday on suspicion of having a loaded gun on campus, police said.

The 16-year-old girl had the gun in her backpack. A 15-year-old boy was also arrested in connection with the incident, said Clovis police Sgt. Jim Munro.

The incident was reported to Clovis police at 11:15 a.m.

The incident started when a text message was relayed to a student at Clovis West High, Munro said. That student notified Clovis Unified police, who called Clovis police.

The girl told police she had the gun “for personal protection for a fight after school at a location in Fresno,” Munro said. No one at Gateway was threatened with the gun, he added.

How and where the girl obtained the gun is being investigated, he said. Both students could be charged with possessing ammunition on a school property, possession a gun on school property and conspiracy.

Gateway High is a continuation high school in Clovis.

Clovis Unified School District issued a statement about the incident.

“The investigation by law enforcement has found no evidence that the student intended to use the weapon on campus or against any Gateway student or staff member,” the statement said. “Instead, the student’s actions appear to have been related to an off-campus incident unrelated to Gateway High and intended for self-protection. The student cooperated fully with officers during this incident.

The information was shared with the Gateway community to quell any rumor and reassure people “that there was no threat directed toward our school or students,” the statement said. “School safety is our first priority, and both students are now facing severe legal and education-related consequences, as we will not tolerate any behavior that could directly or indirectly put our campuses at risk. We appreciate the quick action of the Clovis Unified and City of Clovis police officers to support our school.”

Lewis Griswold: 559-441-6104, @fb_LewGriswold