6-year-old child accidentally brings loaded gun onto school bus, father arrested

Published: November 4, 2021 3:56 PM EDT
Updated: November 4, 2021 10:07 PM EDT

A father faces charges after a child accidentally brings a loaded gun onto their school bus.

According to the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the six-year-old child had a backpack that contained two parts – including a smaller inside pack. While on the way to the bus stop, the child picked up the smaller pack from the backseat of his father’s car and put it inside his backpack.

The gun was loaded with a single round.

Investigators say the child likely didn’t know what was in the bag when he grabbed it.

The student, who goes to Mirror Lakes Elementary school, opened the backpack on the school bus and found the gun.

Marceno said, at no time did the student threaten or point the gun at anybody.

Another student alerted school staff as soon as they arrived at school. At that time, the administration took possession of the gun before the child went on campus.

It’s a call that Taylor Conley, the mother of the boy who reported the gun to administrators, hoped she’d never get.

“I was just in shock. I mean, literally just felt like. I’m sorry. I was just glad I didn’t get a worse phone call you know,” said Conley who got emotional as she recalled the moment she learned what happened.

The school said her son told staff a six-year-old student brought a weapon on the school bus and he saw it.

Conley told her son that he’s a hero. She told him, “you did good. Like, you could have gotten hurt, yourself. And the fact that you didn’t and you possibly saved other lives just from a simple accident, was good on its own.”

Now, the six-year-old’s father Jeffrey Crocker is in jail.

“You have to, for the children, either inform them properly or keep them up properly, both to be exact,” said Conley.

Investigators say he never threatened to use it and never pointed it at anyone, but Conley says that her son’s version of what happened is a little different.

“He seen the barrel is what he told me. Because I was like, I showed him a picture. I was like, ‘did you see this end?’ he said yes. But he said it wasn’t pointed at his face directly,” said Conley.

Conley says this hits too close to home. She doesn’t feel comfortable letting her son ride the bus anymore. “You always watch the news and you’re like, ‘not my kid, not my school, thank god’. But then hearing that something could have happened, something could have went off today at my son’s face.”

The child’s father, Jeffrey Braxton Crocker, 41, faces charges of failure to store a firearm in a secure location and child neglect.

Marceno said Crocker has had previous out-of-state weapons and narcotics charges.

School District of Lee County Superintendent Ken Savage said, “I want to stress to parents the importance of talking with your children about gun safety” and to make sure they do not have access.

Investigators say they are still reviewing the case to determine if the child who brought the gun onto the bus will be disciplined.