Teacher Fires Gun Inside Classroom

A teacher was taken into custody on Wednesday after he barricaded himself inside a classroom and fired a loaded gun.

NBC News reports that Jesse Randall Davidson, 53, was a well-known History teacher at Dalton High School in Georgia. Davidson barricaded himself in his classroom around 11:30 a.m., prior to class time. While inside, the history teacher pushed against the door and warned school officials that he had a gun.

The principal of Dalton High, Steve Bartoo, says that he tried using a key to unlock the door, but Davidson shoved it closed and shouted, “go away!”

According to NBC, once the police arrived, they tried coercing Davidson into coming out, however he warned them that he had a gun. Minutes later a shot was fired and hit a window, resulting in no injuries. After 30-45 minutes, Dalton police were able to apprehend the suspect and take him into safety.

Mr. Bartoo was the principal of the school during Davidson’s entire employment and he explains that the teacher never exhibited any strange behavior. "As far as I know he was fit to be at work, and I'm not aware of any current depression,” said Bartoo.

As stated in a report by Fox News, the teacher had a brief history with law enforcement in 2016 and the school was made fully aware of the incident at the time. Davidson turned himself into the police on March 21st, 2016 when confessed to hiring a hit man to kill someone he met online. Police could not verify the info nor find the individual so Davidson was sent to the hospital for a routine mental health screening.

This unfortunate event took place in wake of the Parkland shooting that left 14 students and 3 staff members dead, so it was not surprising that students were extremely alarmed upon hearing about the shooter. People inside the high school were advised to evacuate calmly, however most students were so shaken up that they began running, which made it difficult for others to navigate.

Luckily, all Dalton students were able to get to safety and the only injury sustained was a twisted ankle. Students were shocked to find out that it was Mr. Davidson because he was always so helpful and understanding.

Chondi Chastain, a junior at the school, had Davidson as a history teacher and said that he always tried his hardest to help his students succeed. "I didn't expect this," Ms. Chastain said, "(Mr. Davidson) cares about your grade and doesn't want you to fail." 

Mr. Davidson’s meltdown only further complicates the current widespread argument on whether teachers should be armed inside the classroom or not. It is obvious that the teacher did not want to harm anyone, however there is no saying what Davidson could have been capable of.

Gun violence has risen since the tragic Parkland shooting and this incident is proof that something must be done. Arming teachers may result in events far worse than what happened at Dalton High, so it is necessary to discuss the implications that may come with having guns inside a classroom.