Flagler Technical Institute Director Kevin McCarthy’s lineage isn’t anything to trifle with. He’s the son of the late Bob McCarthy, who served as Flagler sheriff longer than the last two sheriffs’ four terms combined. He was an assistant principal at Flagler Palm Coast High School, where he was in charge of discipline. And he’s had his share of challenges as the head of the school district’s adult education division. So when he saw two boys who seemed out of place walking around his campus Wednesday, he knew something was amiss.
He recognized one of the boys as a student but not the other. Both boys were eventually arrested after a foot pursuit, one of them carrying a stun gun, pot, a glass pipe and cigars.
McCarthy had spotted the two boys, both 14, acting suspiciously and walking between Flagler Palm Coast High School and Flagler Technical Institute, whose grounds adjoin each other along State Road 100 in Palm Coast. The boys were trying to open the south gate to campus. When McCarthy approached them, one of them acknowledged not being a student at either school, and being from Daytona Beach. Neither could explain why they were on school property. They gave McCarthy changing stories.
By then McCarthy had contacted Cpl. Calvin Grant, the school resource deputy at FPC. As soon as Grant arrived, the two boys, according to their arrest reports, fled on foot toward the Target shopping center, ignoring Grant’s commands to stop. Grant followed. McCarthy was able to identify one of the two boys, who turned out to be a student in the district.
Grant followed the suspects into the shopping center, losing sight of one but seeing the other run into PetSmart. Grant found him hiding in the women’s rest room. He ordered him to come out. The boy complied, placing his hands on his head and walking out to be handcuffed and removed from the property.
A search of his book bag revealed cigars, an e-cigarette, a cell phone, an iPod and a tablet, along with a silver chain and gold chain. The boy “could not present proof of purchase for any of the electronic items,” the arrest report states, though generally no one is required to show such proof. Pot was also found in the bag. The boy, records showed, is currently on probation on a previous charge. He was charged with possession of a controlled substance and resisting arrest without violence.
Another deputy was able to apprehend the other boy, who was also carrying a small amount of pot along with the glass pipe and the stun gun. A test of the stun gun showed it was functional. He was charged with felony possession or display of a weapon on school property and other misdemeanor drug charges. Both teens were booked into the Flagler County jail. One child was released to his parent and the other was taken to the Juvenile Detention Center in Daytona Beach.