SMYTH COUNTY, Va. (WJHL) – A Smyth County Schools employee is facing a felony charge after a student allegedly found a firearm in her car on a school campus last week.
According to a release from Smyth County Sheriff Chip Shuler, a student was being escorted outside for recess by a Special Education teacher at Marion Middle School on April 25 when they opened the unlocked door of a vehicle. Inside the vehicle, the student allegedly found a firearm.
After the firearm’s discovery, Shuler said the situation was immediately reported to the campus’s School Resource Officer (SRO) by the Special Education teacher. The incident was then shared with the Smyth County Commonwealth’s Attorney, the release said, and a warrant for the part-time employee’s arrest was obtained.
The owner of the vehicle, Dianna Joyce Bice, 46, of Marion was charged with possession of a weapon on school property pursuant to Virginia Code 18.2-308.1(B), according to the release.
Virginia law classifies offenses under that section of code as a Class 6 felony. You can find the full text of the law below:
If any person knowingly possesses any firearm designed or intended to expel a projectile by action of an explosion of a combustible material while such person is upon (i) the property of any child day center or public, private, or religious preschool, elementary, middle, or high school, including buildings and grounds; (ii) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (iii) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he is guilty of a Class 6 felony.Code of Virginia
Bice was released on a $2,000 unsecured bond pending her arraignment in Smyth County General District Court, Shuler said.
This is a developing story. Details will be updated as they become available.