Predictably, the whole university went into lockdown.
Police took four juvenile suspects into custody just before 11:30 a.m. None of the four suspects were students. One had a dark green toy gun in his waistband that school officials said could have been mistaken for a real gun.This is New Jersey and guns aren't allowed. At all. So, four kids were found with a toy and the police detained them.
The four kids were apparently rummaging through some sort of trash dumpster and told cops that's where they found the toy gun, police sources told NBCNewYork.com. One of the juveniles picked up the fake gun, put it in his belt and started walking away with the other three kids when a woman spotted the gun in his waistband and called police. It's not clear whether or not she was a student.
No shots were fired. It wasn't clear how many people were on campus at the time of the incident. Police believe the incident stemmed from a bigger problem of kids from town going on campus and rummaging through dumpsters looking for unused alcohol, which campus security says has been on ongoing problem.
I'm reminded of my own university experience where we routinely kept our guns in the dorm room. Yeah, it was forbidden, but no one seemed to care. Lots of us hunted and it helps to have a gun on campus if you're going hunting after class.
Then, years later when I adjuncted Police Science courses at the same campus, I was in a plain-clothes assignment and I'd head to the campus after work and more often than not, my revolver was tucked in a holster on my belt. Only once did anyone even make notice of it. When the cop responded to the "man with a gun" complaint, we laughed and chit-chatted for a few minutes before he continued on his way.
The folks in New Jersey really need to get a grip.