A 12-year-old boy caused panic when he took a replica gun to his school and pointed it at other students Wednesday, police said.
The boy, a student at Earle B. Wood Middle School in Rockville, Maryland, had a plastic gun that had been spray-painted black, Montgomery County Police said.
Police said about 120 students were involved in extracurricular activities in the school auditorium about 3:30 p.m. Wednesday when the boy entered, approached a group of girls and pulled what looked like a real gun from his backpack.
He showed them the gun and told them that the safety was on before he began to point the gun at other students around the auditorium, police said.
Students began to scream and run, police said. Several children found a teacher in the auditorium and told her what was happening. She told them to seek shelter behind the stage and then found the boy student sitting on a mat, holding the gun with his finger on the trigger, police said.
The teacher told him to give her the gun. He put the gun back into his bookbag and gave it to her, police said.
The student was arrested and taken to a police station before being released to his parents.
He has been charged with threat of mass violence and disrupting school activities and threatening others with bodily harm.