Police: AR-15 with full magazine found inside student’s vehicle at West Allegheny High School

IMPERIAL, Pa. — A local high school student is facing multiple charges after police said they found a gun inside his vehicle.

Court documents say that the administration at West Allegheny High School received reports of a smell of marijuana on 18-year-old Ja’Shon Spencer. The school resource officer began responding to the report.

The school resource officer said that he spoke with Spencer and could smell marijuana emanating from him. The student denied using any illegal substances.

Spencer’s probation officer arrived at the school and aided the resource officer in looking for Spencer’s 2017 Ford Escape. Officers said that when the two found the vehicle they also found a girl sitting in the passenger seat who did not attend the high school.

The officers said they took the girl to the school office and contacted her parents and Spencer’s mother. Police say that Spencer admitted to having a gun in his vehicle after talking to his mother.

A search warrant was issued for the vehicle on May 10 and court documents say that a loaded AR-15 with a full magazine was found in the vehicle. Officers also say they found a small bag of marijuana and a vape that contained THC.

“The firearm never left the student’s vehicle, and investigating officers do not believe there was intent to use it at West Allegheny. The student has been taken into police custody,” said Karen Ruhl, the communication coordinator of West Allegheny School District.

Blaine Jones, Spencer’s attorney, believes that the context of how the weapon was found and the unknown intentions of its use will play a significant role in the upcoming events associated with this incident.

“Based on the complaint, it does not appear that any threats were made, so let’s [consider] the circumstances of the allegations before we decide that we are going to try [to] convict and sentence this young man,” said Jones.

Spencer is facing charges of possession, possession of a weapon on school property, corruption of a minor and possession of marijuana.