A frightening find for an elementary school teacher in the east who discovered a gun on the outdoor basketball courts. The gun was discovered at Vanceboro Farm Life Elementary School in Craven County Tuesday and police say they are still investigating.
With children at play signs nearby, the basketball courts outside Vanceboro Farm Life Elementary School is perhaps the last place you would expect to find a loaded handgun.
"I just thank god they left it there and it didn't hurt anybody," said parent Lajeanna Cronier.
A teacher found that gun Tuesday morning on a routine check of the courts looking for items left from the night before. That's when parents were notified.
"They alerted everybody with instant alert messages from school, but I really think it's one of those things that happens because on a general rule the school is very safe," said Cronier.
Retired teacher Richard Cannon, Jr. used to work at the school and says protecting kids is a top priority.
"You try everyday to head off anything that might be out of the ordinary," said Cannon.
Which is exactly what happened when a teacher, instead of a child, found the gun. Cronier just wishes things like this didn't happen in the first place.
"It doesn't really matter what they do. Somebody is always going to break the rules. There is no trespassing signs up there but somebody is always going to break the rules," said Cronier
An investigation is now underway to try and determine who broke the rules, and how that gun got there.
Vanceboro police say they are working with the ATF on the case.
A loaded handgun has been found on an elementary school playground.
Craven County Schools say the gun was found by a teacher at Vanceboro Farm Life Elementary School around 10:30 Tuesday morning.
The school system says Vanceboro police were immediately called and they believe the gun was left on the basketball court.
School officials say those courts have been known to have belongings left behind after weekend games and have become a trouble area. So much that teachers go out and clean up the area and make sure it's safe before children go out to play. Parents were sent an "Alert Now" message about the discovery.
Vanceboro police have not returned phone calls seeking additional information.