Society

Vice Principal Fights to Keep His Gun at Junior High School (Video)

| by Michael Allen

Kent Williams, the vice principal of Tevis Junior High School, was arrested on Aug. 28 when he brought his handgun on to the Bakersfield, California, campus.

An unidentified school employee told district officials that Williams had a gun in his backpack. Williams claimed that he carried the gun to protect himself and students from possible danger (video below).

Williams, who has a concealed carry firearms permit, has filed a claim (the first step to filing a lawsuit) against the City of Bakersfield and the Bakersfield Police Department (BPD) for false arrest.

"Me, being a law-abiding citizen, that was the first time I had ever been exposed to handcuffs," Williams told BakersfieldNow.com. "I was frightened and scared out of my mind."

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"I was put into handcuffs and put into the backseat of the car and transported to the BPD or the jail, I guess it's called," Williams told ABC 23.

According to the BPD, officers thought that Williams may have violated the California Gun Free Zone Act. However, Williams' case was dropped by the Bakersfield district attorney's office.

"I would like to establish my name and get my credibility back, as well as teach or be an administrator where I can take care of kids, like I have been doing for 27 years," added Williams.

The Panama Buena Vista School District has placed Williams on leave while it investigates the incident.

Williams' lawyer Daniel Rodriguez told BakersfieldNow.com, "It was an illegal arrest. [Police] say, 'Hey, we get a free pass, because we made a mistake. We were ignorant of the law.' Ignorance of the law is not a defense. The same goes for the police."

"[The police] tell [Williams], he has a concealed weapons permit, everything seems in order and the higher up said, arrest him anyway," Rodriguez told ABC 23.

"Was it just sloppiness, indifference, laziness? I don't know. What I do know, is that you cannot have probable cause, if you have a mistake," stated Rodriguez.

Rodriguez is not planning legal action against the Panama Buena Vista School District if they reinstate Williams.

Sources: BakersfieldNow.com, ABC 23