Well today in Law and Public Safety I was in the library researching school shootings, and I found this one that really caught my eye. A six-year-old kid did it. On a Tuesday morning, February 29, 2000, he went to the Theo J. Buell Elementary School carrying both a concealed Davis .32 semiautomatic handgun, and a knife. Another kid reported the knife to a teacher, and it was taken away. The boy held on to the gun. This little boy was messed up. It was argued that he was “too young” and “that he didnt’ know what consequence it would bring”, but in my opinion, if he had the knowledge to point a gun at someone and pull the triger, he knew what was going to happen. Then on top of that when they took him to court he denied doing it. He said that he did not shoot the girl, but instead blamed it on another 1st grader. A 6-year-old girl was shot to death in her classroom by a first-grade classmate with a stolen handgun. Kayla Rolland died at 10:29 a.m. of a single gunshot wound to the chest after being rushed to Hurley Medical Center by Emergency Medical Workers.
This kid and his 8 year old brother were living with their mother until she got evicted, then they moved into, get this, a crack house, where guns were traded for drugs, with their uncle and the 19-year-old man who left the murder weapon, obviously loaded, under some blankets. The boy and his brother had been sharing a single sofa as a bed. Their living conditions were poor and they were exposed to things they shouldn’t have been exposed to that young. That’s one of the reason’s this doesn’t surprise me, cause with a better life style this would have never happened.
Outside the white clapboard house, dented hubcaps and other discarded auto parts lay strewn among candy wrappers, soda bottles and wires. Broken windows were covered with a blue tarp. A light so dim it might have been a continuation of the dark showed from inside. Of the boy, Genesee County Sheriff Robert Pickerell said, “He was basically living in hell.”
Who killed Kayla Rolland? The hell were the boy lived has to be part of the problem.It had to of produced a child full of rage and confusion. The boy was said to have played normal street games, with normal kids, but he was also known to have started fights. It was said the boy once punched him because he wouldn’t give him a pickle. He said the boy was made to stay after school nearly every day for saying “the F word,” flipping people off, pinching and hitting. Some weeks before, he had stabbed a girl with a pencil. He had attacked Kayla before and, on the day prior to the killing, tried to kiss her and was rebuffed. So that makes me think. What was going threw this little boys head as he looked at Kayla and shot her. Was it the fact that she rejected him when he tried to kiss her, or was it purely the anger and rage that had built up from his horrible living conditions? Did his lack of a strong parental body growing up cause him to be this way? His father was in jail and his mother tried her hardest. That made me think about how much us as kids depend on our parents. They are our examples growing up. Think about it, when you were a kid didn’t you always want to be just like your parents? I know I did. So maybe the lack of parental guidence in this boys life (the few short 6 years before this happened) was what caused this. It just makes me feel bad that poor Kayla and her family had to suffer. Her memory will never be forgotton, even for those of us who never met her. What her future would have been, will stay unknown, because of one little boy who wasn’t quite right in the head. She was only 6 when this happened, and if she was still alive today she would be just a year older than me. Kayla Rolland, may she rest in peace, for our lesson has been learned.
With a record of behavior like this, one might ask why no one was paying more helpful attention to him. The teacher to whom the knife was reported did not take him to the principal’s office, where he could have been searched. There is no sign that any social-service organization was watching, or even that one was in the vicinity. His parents were worse than useless to him.
I look back and think about how I was in 6th grade and that is what surprises me. What I do remember of being in sixth grade was that we didn’t really care about anything. At least I didn’t. All I wanted to do was color and spend time with my friends. Recess was the highlight of my day and never once did the thought ever come in my mind about killing someone. But I was a normal 1st grader, he wasn’t.
This whole research project we’re doing in Law and Public Safety opened my eyes up to what could happen. School shootings can happen anywere and any time. Even in our small town. I pay more attention to my suroundings and the people in my school. Sure most people wouldn’t think that there would be a school shooter in our school, but to tell the truth, you never know. And we will never truly know until it happens. Which I am hoping it won’t. And also to get this clear, I am not against having guns in your home. Sure if there are little kids around then the guns should be locked up, but I am not saying they shouldn’t be there. Guns are for our protection, and on top of that guns don’t kill people, people kill people. So on that note I will end this blog post. Hopefully, I gave you something to think about. And if you want to find out even more about who killed Kayla, check out this site http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,996314-1,00.html.