JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A substitute teacher at a Duval County middle school was arrested Tuesday after bringing a stun gun to school and threatening at least one student with it, police said.
The teacher, 26-year-old Kiara Ansley, was removed from the Jefferson Davis Middle School classroom and charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds.
"We take any threats to student safety seriously and are very thankful that no students were harmed during this incident," a district spokeswoman said.
Ansley made a threat in a classroom, a student notified the principal and a school board police officer confronted Ansley, who handed over her stun gun, a source told News4Jax.
A call went out to parents at the middle school from Principal Nidia Ashby, telling them about the incident.
“That's scary that my son's around that and that they would have to do that or even have the nerve to do it,” parent Sheria Scott said.
Scott's son is a sixth-grader at Jefferson Davis, and she said she didn't receive the message the district sent to parents.
“I'm shocked I didn't know about that,” she said.
Even if she had, Scott said she would still be wondering the same thing she is now: why?
“Hearing the teacher has a stun gun, maybe for safety, because I know there's a lot of violence in this school, but at the same time that's scary,” Scott said.
Parent Nicole Dye said she wasn’t as surprised.
She moved her daughter to another school, saying she didn’t want to worry about the people who are supposed to be educating and protecting her children.
“It's really hard to feel like your kid is safe and that they are going to come home in one piece and that you are not going to get a call that they're in the hospital or something has happened,” Dye said.
Duval County Public Schools informed its substitute teacher vendor, Kelly Services, to ensure Ansley will no longer be placed in any of the district’s schools.
The company released a statement, saying:
“Kelly Services is always concerned about reports of inappropriate behavior by one of our employees as the safety of students is our first priority. We are cooperating fully with the investigation of this matter. However, due to employment regulations, we do not discuss details of employee matters publicly."
"We applaud the cooperation of the students, faculty and staff and the quick investigative efforts by Duval County School Police," the school district spokeswoman said.