A parent told 14 News that their child was a target when another child brought a weapon to school.
First-grader Heaven Carter says she and her classmates were hanging up their backpacks on Thursday morning when a boy in her class threatened her with a knife.
"He got in his backpack and he just hurried up and showed me the knife," says Heaven. "He hurried up and put it back in his backpack. As soon as he put it up, he told me he was going to hurt me with it, after I got back from my medicines."
Later at recess, Heaven says the boy showed her a picture he drew that demonstrated how he planned to kill her.
"That's when she got scared. And that's when she notified the teacher," says Caleb.
Heaven's parents, Caleb and Rachel, say Heaven's teacher was alarmed by the situation and that the school's principal, Bob Lawson, took the knife, the boy, and Heaven into his office for questioning.
"The little boy said that his sister put it in his backpack. That's what he told the principal and then that's when Mr. Lawson kept telling her, 'Are you lying to me? Did the little boy say that he brung the knife to hurt you? Or did he tell you that his sister put it in there?,'" says Caleb. "I mean, Heaven hasn't changed her story, not one time."
As all of this was going on, Caleb and Rachel say the school neglected to notify them. In fact, they say, school officials didn't even call the police. With tears in her eyes, Heaven told her parents what happened when she got home from school and Caleb called the police.
"Any time there's any kind of threatening, especially involving a weapon, it should be handled through law enforcement, and they didn't," says Caleb. "they avoided it."
Caleb believes the school neglected to call the police, to avoid bad publicity. A move, he says, demonstrates a lack of concern for student safety.
"They more or less said that they wanted to keep it out of publicity, because that school is known for having high test scores and no violence in it and all this," says Caleb.
Caleb and Rachel say the boy was suspended for the last two days of school, and that they do not intend to re-enroll Heaven at Bend Gate next year.
"My daughter won't be back at bend gate," says Rachel.
"In my opinion, it makes me feel like they're just showing the other kids, that feel like that, they can get by with it," says Caleb. "It's just opening the door for other problems."
14 News spoke to Henderson County Assistant Superintendent Morgana Stanley on the phone and she says they didn't involve the police since the knife was small, and they didn't perceive it as a threat. But Heaven's parents contend that any weapon brought to school is a threat.
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