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Buddy Taylor Middle Student Arrested With Loaded Gun in Math Class; .45 Was Stolen From Unlocked Car on Point Pleasant

| December 7, 2018

The gun the student brought to school, a .45 semi-automatic, had been reported stolen from an unlocked car at a house on Point Pleasant in palm Coast in April. (FCSO)

The gun the student brought to school, a .45 semi-automatic, had been reported stolen from an unlocked car at a house on Point Pleasant in palm Coast in April. (FCSO)

Last Updated: 8:18 p.m.

A 14-year-old boy was arrested at Buddy Taylor Middle School in possession of a loaded gun shortly after noon during his fifth-period math class today.


The incident took place in the school’s second floor of Building 9. “A student was somehow made aware that this boy might have a gun in his backpack,” Brittany Kershaw, a sheriff’s spokesperson who had just been to the school, said, “alerted the teacher, the teacher alerted the school resource deputy who’s on the BTMS campus,” that was Cory Petty, who would be joined by Dean Millette, “and he went to the classroom and asked to speak with the boy. He pretty much knew immediately what they were there for.”

The student, Dewuan Brinson, had shown the gun to a girl and possibly others in teacher Kelley Barrigar’s class, according to his arrest report: “Ms. Kelley noticed several students in her class seemed to be upset,” the report states. The teacher “asked the girls what was wrong. Several of the girls informed Ms. Kelley that suspect Dewuan Brinson had a gun on campus but the gun did not have a magazine.” (See the arrest report in full.)

Classes were not disrupted and continued through dismissal at 1:40 p.m., district spokesman Jason Wheeler said.

The semi-automatic .45-caliber gun, is a Smith and Wesson M&P.45 caliber handgun, serial number HST5697. “It should be noted that this firearm can be fired with a run in the chamber and no magazines in the chamber (stamped on side of the
gun,” the arrest report states. The gun had one bullet  chambered, and no magazine or other bullets in the student’s possession. The gun had been reported stolen on April 18 from an unlocked car on Point Pleasant Drive in Palm Coast, belonging to home-owner Richard Friese, 70, according to a sheriff’s incident report obtained by FlaglerLive.

Brinson, whose parents were immediately notified and reported to the school, was cooperative throughout. He appears to have explained the reason for the gun being in his possession, but those reasons were redacted from the arrest report released by the sheriff’s office, as self-incriminating statements by suspects are in such reports. Later, a detective met with the student’s parents at their house on Ponce DeLeon Drive in Palm Coast and got permission from them to get the ammunition and magazine from the house.

Brinson had been arrested in November 2017 after placing a teenage girl in a chokehold and robbing her outside  Pine Lakes Apartments on Pine Lakes Parkway. The victim identified him the next day at Indian Trails Middle School, where Brinson was a student, he was arrested and charged with sudden snatching. The Department of Juvenile Justice released him to his parents and the State Attorney’s Office later dropped the charge after putting Brinson through teen court, a diversionary program with significant success.

It appears not to have been successful in Brinson’s case.

sheriff's officials

Sheriff’s officials at Buddy Taylor this afternoon. From left: Youth Services Sgt. Chris Ragazzo, Sheriff Staly, Director of Domestic Homeland Security Randall Stroud, Community Outreach Sgt. Mike Lutz. Click on the image for larger view. (FCSO)

“We don’t know yet why he did that,” Sheriff Rick Staly said of the gun possession today. “What we do know is this is a troubled kid we’ve had dealings with before on a serious felony, and this is a kid that needs to have some discipline and be seriously dealt with by the juvenile justice system. The last case we had on him, they sent him to teen court and obviously that didn’t work. What this case does show though is that the systems we have in place worked, not to prevent the gun from being on campus, we don’t have a system for that if the student brings it in, but we have educated the students in the community and in the classroom–if you see something, say something, that’s what happened in this case.”

Brinson was detrained in the school’s offices–he was still there in mid-afternoon, being questioned by detectives–and was to be turned over to the juvenile justice system. “He never made any threats to anyone that he was going to do anything,” Kershaw said, “he didn’t threaten a specific person or the school or anything, but he did have a firearm on campus.”

Brinson faces three felony charges: possession of firearm by minor, poss of a firearm on a school campus, and possession of stolen property. “And I hope this time DJJ will keep him in detention. I’m not going to hold my breath,” the sheriff said.

The sheriff was just as vehement about responsible–or irresponsible–gun ownership. An ardent defender of gun rights, he said irresponsible gun ownership can have disastrous consequences.

Richard Friese, in a Facebook photo.

Richard Friese, in a Facebook photo.

On April 18, Friese reported to deputies that his .45-caliber semi-automatic was stolen from his unlocked pick-up truck in front of 58 Point Pleasant Drive. He’d kept the gun in a bag under the driver’s seat. The gun had 10 rounds in the magazine, and one in the chamber, when it was stolen. (Friese, a former volunteer with the now-defunct Bunnell fire department, was informed by sheriff’s deputies of the gun being recovered. He did not answer his phone after two calls this afternoon. See the stolen-gun report in full.)

“This is another prime example of why you have to lock your car doors in your driveways, because here’s a gun that was stolen from an unlocked car that ended up in a school in the hands of a 14-year-old, and it could have had a disastrous outcome,” Staly said. Imagining the worst, he said, “I’m sure that this owner would have been sued and been liable that way, but that doesn’t bring back a child that may have been killed or an adult that may have been killed or injured because of the negligence of the owner of this gun.”

The incident at the school developed “rather quickly so there was no opportunity to do any code change, the student was identified rather quickly,” Wheeler said, explaining why the security status at the school never changed. “There was no disruption to learning.”

A robocall went out to Buddy Taylor Middle School Parents around the time of dismissal, explaining the incident.  “I want to point out the ‘see something, say something’ campaign works,” Superintendent Jim Tager was quoted as saying in a release issued by the sheriff’s office this afternoon. “I commend that, combined with the quick actions of our School Resource Deputies, to bringing a quick resolution to this incident.”

A 14-year-old student brought a loaded semi-automatic gun to Buddy Taylor Middle School today. (© FlaglerLive)

There was little disruption to Buddy Taylor Middle School today despite the gun incident. (© FlaglerLive)

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55 Responses for “Buddy Taylor Middle Student Arrested With Loaded Gun in Math Class; .45 Was Stolen From Unlocked Car on Point Pleasant”

  1. lena marshall says:

    Wake up Palm Coast its here !

  2. Really says:

    14 with a loaded stolen gun, after forcibly robbing a teenage girl in Nov.2018 with no consequences by DJJ . Sounds like we will be hearing a bunch about this kid near term

  3. The original woody says:

    Releasing him to his parents worked out just fine.He really learned his lesson.

  4. Jan J Reeger says:

    It is so very easy to get in the habit of locking all doors ~ car and home. I certainly do. Even when I am home, my doors are locked.

  5. art schwartz says:

    Will the gun owner be charged with criminal negligence?

  6. ASF says:

    I don’t know who is more dangerous to the community–The idiotic adult who left his gun in his unlocked car or the disturbed kid who stole it and took it school with him in his back-pack. Ten to one, the perp’s parents will now be complaining to the authorities that they should have been consulted before anyone tried to question their misunderstood angel or search his back-pack. The adult who left a loaded weapon in his unlocked vehicle should lose his carry permit.

  7. Stephanie says:

    This is absolutely disgusting. I’m not defending what this boy did but there is no reason why his name should be listed in this article. He has rights and they clearly are not being met. I do agree that he needs to face appropriate punishment but he is A CHILD.

  8. Atticus finch says:

    The problem is not that he left his truck unlocked with a firearm in it…. the problem is his left a firearm in his truck.. you cant say that’s why you cant stress the importance of locking your vehicles lol… what would you say if the kid broke the window out and stole the gun? This is where liberals get their ammo for their anti gun bill crap. We have a troubled teen who doesnt learn and seems to breaks the law, theres possible hope for him. And we have an idiot who is an irresponsible owner of a firearm and should have to pay a hefty fine. If you own a firearm, you should be sure it is in your possession at all times or at least know the location of it and that it’s out of anyone reach but your own. I’m glad no one was hurt. The real punishment should be with the moron who left a .45 caliber S&W Shield unlocked in his vehicle. Theres hope for the kid, but its obvious at the age of 70, you clearly know jack about firearm safety, nor is it a concern to him as to the magnitude of the reality that could have happened today because of his negligence. Of course, the kid is to blame as well, but you sir, should not own a firearm. I hope you’re reading this too. Give that S&W to me, please. Trust me, no one wants you owning it now. Just reply to this comment and I’ll meet you somewhere for the exchange and bill of sale. Itll be safer with me.

  9. PCMomof3 says:

    As a mom of a student at BTMS today, I am very, very concerned!!! While
    I’m glad that a student spoke up, this story could have ended much differently! I truly believe the man who
    left the gun unsecured in his car should face serious repercussions! What if his carelessness and negligence could have ended with an injury of death?? It’s sad that sending your kids to school has become such a scary thing.

  10. Feddy says:

    Simple charge the gun owner for neglect for not securing his weapon, charge the parents, the apple don’t fall far from the tree at that age. If parents were charged for the crimes that their children commit then maybe the parents might take a interest in what they are doing. So I’m wondering if the child was the one who actually stoled the gun or did he take it from one of his parents?

  11. Josh says:

    You have metal detectors in every courthouse in America, why not the school? These lawmakers protect themselves and leave our kids sitting ducks. Put up metal detectors!

  12. Born and Raised Here says:

    We need to train the Teachers to carry, and know how to use a firearm, or there are alot of veterans with experience in handling firearms, that would give there time to walk the hallways of our schools to protect student and staff.

  13. Citizen says:

    The person who left the gun in the unlocked car needs to be held accountable!!

  14. Concerned Citizen says:

    This could have been prevented.

    People need to stop leaving their weapons in their vehicles. And please take the time to lock your vehicle and double check before entering your home.

    As a former Law Enforcement Officer I will say this. There is absolutely no reason to leave your weapon unattended in your vehicle. It’s unsafe and irresponsible. Take the extra time to secure it. If it’s an inconvenience you don’t need to carry.

    If you own weapons you are responsible for them 24/7. Safe and responsible handling are part of the requirements of owning a gun. This means securing them at all times and keeping them out of the hands of others.

    The owner of this gun should have charges brought against him for negligence. At the very least a Deputy needs to have a stern talk with the owner. Gun owners need to start learning accountability when they are negligent.

    Finally I hope the legal system takes a hard line on the student. Troubled or not he committed several felonies and should be charged as an adult. Tired of reading about school incidents in the news.

  15. palmcoaster says:

    I applaud the students that reported their classmate had a gun. their teacher acting immediately without generating massive alarm and our sheriff department officers fast actions! It takes the community working with our law enforcement to resolve these issues against unexpected suspects breaking the law regarding guns and the irresponsible gun owners. What about harsh fines imposed in these careless gun owners..?

  16. Robert says:

    Thanks to the girls for reporting this. Staley always looking for credit. He’s a politician.

  17. Titicaca says:

    The gentleman that left his piece in the car overnight wasn’t being negligent. He just didn’t expect someone to come around and pilfer from his vehicle on his property. I suppose you could say the same crap about him being irresponsible or not knowing jack about firearm safety if he had left a box cutter or a hammer or a flare stick in his vehicle. I highly doubt the weapon was just sitting on his dash waiting to be stolen. And yes a box cutter and a hammer are different from a pistol but they are weapons none the less. Bottom line, stealing is wrong and uncalled for regardless of what was taken. And trust me, there are many folks who leave a weapon in their vehicles that are out of sight just in case they need it in the event they are carjacked or robbed at a stop light. Go up a state or two and people still leave their keys in the ignition while shopping at the store. Are they being irresponsible or just too trusting in a society that thinks thievery is ok because it’s the victim’s fault. Fuck outta here with that. At least this man reported his gun stolen when he could have just wrote it off like nothing ever happened. Let’s all be thankful that the juvenile didn’t use that weapon on anyone, things could of been a whole lot worse.

  18. Concerned Citizen says:

    Arming teachers and having anyone but uniformed Law Enforcement in a school is going to lead to a bad situation.

    If you have an active shooter situation how will Law Enforcement discern who the Perp is and who the good guys are? When entering an active shooter situation you have seconds to make a decision. When Law Enforcement enters a facility and someone has a weapon out how do you think they will respond?

    I know a lot of school systems have jumped on the Guardian program and want to arm teachers. I applaud the efforts to keep students safe. It will take one incident to throw all of that out the window. Especially if things go bad.

    However I think that having plain clothed personnel carrying weapons around a school is going to lead to a bad situation.

  19. Sue Dickinson says:

    Where are the metal detectors you ask? Perhaps the next time the School Board presents a referendum to increase security for our schools the voters will support it. I have always said not IF but WHEN. The next time the outcome might not be so great!

  20. Concerned citizen says:

    Is there a law on the book saying it’s ileagal to leave an unsecured firearm in a moter vehicle? Or an unlocked motor vehicle? Can someone be charged if is not a law? If there is a law does it give any reprociussions?

  21. JOE SCHMO says:

    It is good they published his name,if I had a child in school I would want to know who committed the crime.

  22. mark101 says:

    This kid needs jail time and the owner of the gun, needs to spend some time in jail as well along with the removal and restriction of guns for the owner forever. .

  23. Realist says:

    I am shocked that someone can be stupid enough to leave a firearm loaded or not in an unlocked car. i have a carry permit which is needed for my job. It never leaves my side and certainly never left in a vehicle locked or unlocked. This moron should have his permit revoked. The permit carries some responsibility as he should have realized.

  24. atilla says:

    Here’s a kid who was arrested for attempted murder and robbery in 2017, also a thief who stole a gun and then brings it to school like it’s a trophy and everyone is blaming the owner of the unlocked vehicle. Get a life. The parents should be held accountable for his actions and the training they gave him.

  25. Agkistrodon says:

    Metal Detectors have worked in EVERY school that they have been installed in, and THEY are in use in several districts. As to the person who let a firearm unsecured, I am a Libertarian and believe in the Second Amendment as it is written. The definition of To bear- at that time meant, to be responsible for and in secure possession of at all times. YOU failed.

  26. Richard says:

    The most profound statement in the article above is, ” The Department of Juvenile Justice released him to his parents and the State Attorney’s Office later dropped the charge after putting Brinson through teen court, a diversionary program with significant success. It appears not to have been successful in Brinson’s case.”

    That should be a wake-up call for the judicial system.

  27. lron says:

    It is interesting that no one is commenting on intent. The gun reported it stolen. He did not intend for it to be take. He was careless. The boy, on the other hand, knew he had a stolen gun, intentionally kept it, attended a active shooter drill in school and then intentionally brought it to school with a bullet ready in it. I do not understand why people are crucifying this man? This kid made all the wrong choices and continued to do so. The man was irresponsible but he had no intention of anything harmful. This kid could have decided to open fire when he was in class- he could have open fired when he was aware they were there to pick him up. etc. I bet some people will say that at least he didn’t shoot anyone. At least?

  28. hawkeye says:

    No1 Friese was an idiot for leaving his pistol in his vehicle in the 1st place,what if someone broke into his house and his gun was outside? I get the idea that you should not have to live expecting someone will rob your car,house etc,however in the world we live in now we have to be proactive against thieves, this isnt the 70’s any more. No 2 , this punk who stole his gun should be punished to the maximum that the law allows , the slap on the wrist he got the last time DIDNT work. If he keeps up this lifestyle he will run into someone who has no problem killing him.

  29. TheTruth says:

    Who in their right mind, leaves a gun in an unlocked car? That man needs to be held accountable.
    And it isn’t right putting a juvenile’s name in this article. Nor where people live, what ever happen to some privacy?
    Sounds like this kid has not learned his lesson from previous dealings so, I hope the courts this time make his sentence stiff and no exceptions to it.
    His parents need to watching him a little closer. I hope they punish him, no cellphone, no computer. Time for tough love.

  30. gmath55 says:

    Cops don’t even practice what they preach. LOL

    JSO employee has gun stolen from unlocked vehicle
    https://www.actionnewsjax.com/news/local/jso-employee-has-gun-stolen-from-unlocked-vehicle/814995919

    Deputy left his car unlocked, and someone swiped his AR-15
    https://www.sun-sentinel.com/local/palm-beach/fl-ne-deputy-reprimanded-for-stolen-gun-20180913-story.html

    Pinellas Sheriff’s cruiser left ‘unlocked’ as suspect steals gun, ammo from trunk
    https://www.abcactionnews.com/news/region-pinellas/pinellas-sheriffs-cruiser-left-unlocked-as-suspect-steals-gun-ammo-from-trunk

  31. flagler1 says:

    Not unlawful to leave your car unlocked, unlawful to steal someone’s property.

  32. Speak the truth says:

    This entire situation could have been avoided. First of all the owner should never have left a loaded gun in his car that is negligent and stupidity on his behalf secondly how did this kid get into school with a loaded gun there does need to be metal detectors in every school enough is enough where are the parents they need to be held responsible as well this is a fourteen-year-old we are talking about. I truly hope the system does not go light on him and send them to teen Court again because as we all seen it did nothing treat him like an adult and hold the owner and his parent responsible as well. I’m very happy did this not turn out to be a tragedy.

  33. Be sensible says:

    The “student” needs to be held accountable; he had 1 “easy” incident we know of. The gun owner also needs to be “educated” about his actions. Fine, community service, or some other form of visible action so others can see what can result from being lax. As a gun owner, my personal rules about cars and guns are simple.
    1-Never leave the car unlocked with the gun in it. Not even to run into the house for 1 minute.
    2-Never leave the gun in the car overnight. Why risk it?
    3-When in my convertible, never leave the gun in it. It’s too easy to break into, and locking it in the trunk isn’t a deterrence, they can open the trunk from inside the vehicle.

  34. Trailer Bob says:

    YUPI ! another dummy who should not have a gun. I carry all the time, but never leave my guns in an open car. Just plain lazy and stupid.

  35. Agkistrodon says:

    Atticus finch, that is not a shield pistol. It is a standard M&P 45 ACP, which uses a double stack nag. SHield has a single stack. Not sure exactly which variation it is but there are SEVERAL of this model that will NOT fire without the magazine inserted FULLY. It is called a Magazine Disconnect. On models with that variation, without the magazine, it is useless even with one in the chamber. STill as you said should NEVER be left unsecured, and the owner should be held responsible, and additionally LOSE any CCW permit they might have.

  36. can'tfoolme says:

    Just wondering how this kid happened to zero in on this particular vehicle and happen upon a gun in a bag under the seat! Pure luck or prior knowledge???

  37. The original woody says:

    Soooo let me get this right,everybody else is at fault the not Dewaun”s.The girl who he held in a choke hold and robbed her is at fault she should not be walking down the street at that time.I do agree that not locking your vehicle with or without a gun is irresponsible but where does it stop?Oh the house was left unlocked homeowner is at fault please.

  38. Mark says:

    So what’s the magic bullet solution? I hear lots of stuff but no solutions. There should be a test for gun owners and there should be a test for parents to have children. Laws should be applied equally and fully! Slaps on the wrist and mass programs don’t work. Individual attention works!

  39. ASF says:

    A gun belongs in a gun safe when it is not in use. A seventy year old former firefighter should know better. I am assuming that the gentlemen in question is not so lazy that he can’t take his gun out of the car onto the house with him every night when he retires for the evening. That is only common sense.

  40. A concerned parent says:

    Yes the kid and gun owner need to be held accountable but for people to assume that the parents are bad parents need to stop if you don’t know them personally then don’t judge. And before you send a kid to jail how about finding out what is troubling the kid. You just don’t throw people in jail with out finding out a reason first. And the girl who spoke up needs a medal.

  41. Willy Boy says:

    They so look like a toy gun nowadays.

  42. Hmmm says:

    Just pointing out, in florida, you dont need a permit to have a gun in your car.

  43. Randy Jones says:

    It’s no excuse for leaving your firearm in your car BUT someone who has a concealed weapon license and needs to enter a “gun free zone” must unholster and leave their gun in their car. They may forget to reholster upon returning to their vehicle. Again, this, if it happened, is no excuse for what this gun owner did but it may explain why it happened. If you park your car(s) in your driveway you can (and should) grab the remote(s) before you retire for the night, hold it/them up to a window (or even the inside of your closed garage door) and click the lock button. Likewise, parents, help your children develop a habit of checking all house door locks at night before they go to bed. As they say, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”.

  44. just me says:

    The owner of the gun should lose the right to own a gun. Lock it up, or kiss it good bu-bye! Inexcusable, in an unlocked car??

  45. ASF says:

    @a concerned parent–One need only to take a teensy peek at this kid’s Facebook page to see “what is troubling him.” He is becoming what he is because of what surrounds and influences him. DUH.

  46. Right says:

    Way to go…How many thefts of firearms will now go unreported out of fear of being publicly shamed?

  47. Agkistrodon says:

    Hmmm, That depends on where that weapon is placed. If it is Immediately accessible or UNDER a seat it is NOT legal and under the seat is illegally concealed. Also if you drive in a school zone, with a weapon in your vehicle WITHOUT a CCW permit, YOU have just broken the law. With a CCW all of those are LEGAL.

  48. GT says:

    Take the gun permit away from this moron and put this kid in jail don’t let him back in school, let him do his schooling in the jail and don’t let him out until he gets his diploma.

  49. Bill says:

    While I think its just DUMB to keep a gun in your auto. Im more amazed at how many FIRST put blame on the gun owner. So somebody trespasses a CRIME onto your land next they go into your car another Crime they then burglarize it Again another crime they take a gun at the age of the person that fact alone of possessing a gun a crime they bring it into school another crime. Im sure I missed one or two other crimes committed in this sequence. BUT most put BLAME on the guy who legally owned the gun.

  50. Juvenile vs Felon says:

    Juveniles don’t get protected when they commit FELONIES! His name AND face should be plastered all over the news. Just be glad it’s not your kid.

  51. Agkistrodon says:

    Bill, the reason is, I am a LEGAL gun owner who believes in RESPONSIBLE Ownership. I carry ALWAYS, and my weapon NEVER leaves my possession, and when I absolutely have to disarm, in both my vehicle and home, that weapon is in a bio vault. Quick access, for ME ONLY. I do NOT believe in giving those, who would infringe on MY rights, Ammo to fit their OWN agenda. If you own a Weapon That weapon should be secure, PERIOD end of sentence. If not for that person leaving that weapon unsecured, that teenage never would have gotten that opportunity. That is why Bill.

  52. Dave says:

    If nothing is done to remove the gun owners rights, we as a community can always jus publicly shame him, local businesses can refuse him service and we can give him the silent treatment. Shun this man.SHAME!

  53. iron says:

    @agkistrodon
    “the teenager would never have gotten the opportunity”? How about if that kid did not trespass, steal, possess a stolen gun, enter school grounds etc. There are all kinds of opportunities for kids who are looking for them. This kid made a choice. If someone steals your car and then runs someone over is it your fault because it was your car?

  54. Agkistrodon says:

    A car and a Weapon in a car are two different things. Under Florida law. IF you have a Concealed carry permit, it is UNLAWFUL to leave an weapon in an unlocked car, if that weapon is NOT secured and that is grounds for loss of that permit. If you don’t have a CCW, you probably should NOT have a weapon in your car as there are too many instances that can cause trouble. The CCW frees you of most of those. Make no mistake, I make no excuses for the little thief, thieves are of one of the lowest lifeforms IMHO. HOWEVER, I an sick and tired of people, who would like to take my weapons, have instances such as this to use as fodder for their Agenda. And yes, an UNLOCKED car is an opportunity for a thief. If you doubt that leave your car in your drive unlocked for one week. You will find in rifled through, most probable, maybe NOT. But why take the chance, you lock you home doors, don’t you?

  55. Dave says:

    Back in my day the kids left their guns hidden near the bus stop. Now they are just bringing them into the school. Times have changed.

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