Belleville student expelled over pellet gun

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BELLEVILLE, IL (KTVI) – Vantezz Carter admits he made a mistake. His parents say that mistake will cost the 18-year-old his senior year at Belleville West High School. Juanita Carter says school district officials notified her Monday her son had been expelled.

Superintendent Jeff Dosier told FOX2 the district cannot comment about disciplinary action taken against any student.

Carter caused a brief campus lockdown June 5th. A witness told police the Belleville West football player was pointing a gun at another football player.

Multiple police agencies responded. School was out for the summer but football players were picking up their pads.

Carter said he was sitting inside a friend’s SUV when he saw a bag of air soft pellet guns. The guns look just like real handguns. Carter says while sitting in the SUV, he showed one of those pellet guns to a friend. He says it was an innocent mistake that caused the lockdown. He says the guns belonged to a friend.

The district sent home a letter to parents the day of that incident. The letter reminded students and parents that a school campus is no place for any type of gun.

“I apologized for what I did,” said Carter. “I deserved punishment but to be expelled goes too far.”

Carter’s mother broke into tears thinking about how her son’s senior year will be lost.

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  • Steven Sweeney

    Eighteen years old, he should have known better.Regardless, a zero tolerance policy was in place.He has nobody to blame but himself.That “harmless prank” caused a school lock down. He should pay for the emergency services manpower and do a little time.

  • Lav

    I know the zero tolerance has gone too far in the past, but this incident was deserving. He was old enough to know holding a fake gun on school grounds may cause an alarm. And of course the teen’s parent is against the punishment. What happened to the days where parents teach their kids to learn from their mistakes. Of course if your child is treated unjustly a parent should stick up for them, but this is not one of them.

    • Mascoutan

      “This inceident was deserving…” Really?!? A pellet gun? (you’ll shoot your eye out…) Stupid? yup! Deserving of expulsion? Nope! This incident of over-reaction by the school should serve as an example to ALL parents that common sense has left the building and that parents need to re-take their schools systems back from the liberal/progressives.

      • Lav

        I am not a liberal by any means. I’m pro gun; however, a teenager pointing a pellet gun on school grounds was idiotic. He’s old enough to know better. The school’s rule was expulsion. He’s lucky no charges were filed or the cops fired shots. Yes, schools have gotten nutty but this is not the same situation.

      • Julia Bowen

        I can’t imagine NOT expelling someone for this. I think it’s common knowledge that if you bring ANY pellet or gun or facsimile to a school, you should be prepared for many negative consequences. I have a pellet gun and it is powerful enough to inflict serious injury to someone and even if it was a “play” toy gun, it scared the school, teachers, students, police and placed the area under a lockdown. The cost of the incident should fall back on the parents. I think you might be surprised at how expense a “bad choice” can be to the community. To think of all the other scenarios that could have played out including but not limited to the young man being shot by a police officer, is mind boggling. These are not the times to play; It’s like going to an airport and making some stupid remark about the plane or hijacking. Like, be real surprised if you do that and get pounced on and placed in jail! If my kid was in that school you can bet I would want an expulsion for this type of violation. Wake up; read the papers and see how many school incidents are happening and have happened and then tell me that this is not that serious. I too, was a member of a gun club in high school, but times have changed and school is not the “safe” place it used to be. Pointing any weapon at other individuals is just not acceptable.

  • Groovy Chick

    It was a stupid mistake, to be sure. It was not intended to be harmful, I believe. Expulsion is a tough punishment, but it is better than being charged and jailed. I hope this young man learns from this mistake and turns this episode into something positive, and does what my mother called it, “takes it like a man.”

  • Mascoutan

    What is shocking is the level of insanity provided by these comments. When I was 12 and living in Pikeville, MD, a suburb of Baltimore, I rode my bicycle to the local shooting range, with my .22 rifle slung across my shoulder. The 1 time I was stopped by a police officer, he made sure my rifle was unloaded. Then I was a member of the gun club in high school and carried my rifle and revolver in my car, every day to school, that we had our meetings. School-sponsored, our shooting club instructor was also our history teacher. We brought our weapons into class on many occasions to be inspected for safety and cleanliness. When deer season started, most of the pick-ups had hunting rifles hanging in the racks, in the rear window. How many school shootings happened then as compared to now? The liberal/progressives who wet their pants just by seeing a weapon have ruined our country.

  • dustin

    I believe there should be strict punishment. This wasn’t a simple mistake, he brandished what peers and teachers believed to be a real firearm. Things are not the way they once were, we cannot let things like this happen without recourse. There is too much school violence to turn a blind eye. I am 100% pro gun, but use common sense. We live in a time where you have no idea what nutty kid is going to bring a gun to school and take innocent lives. I believe the boy is sorry, but he is very lucky he was not charged. Or even worse had a police officer been close maybe worse. This is a silly situation, but these are the times we live in.

  • morrow

    Zero tolerance. He has seen or heard the news local and around the country about guns in schools, and he must have known better but he just wasn’t thinking, and that is no excuse. The punishment fits the error he made. If he is given a break then everyone will want a break. His mother should be more angry with him than angry with the school…shucks, he didn’t follow the rules.

  • cheech

    At least they pulled the thick plastic coating off of the sofa for an interview, lol…send him to Normandy

  • Jblizz

    This is a huge overreaction.

    1. School was not even in session.

    2. It wasn’t even his gun. It belonged to a friend.

    3. Expulsion? Seriously? Ruin his life over something like this?

    And I’m sorry school administrators, yes you DO need to comment. You are PUBLIC SERVANTS paid by our tax dollars.

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