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GR police seize guns following high school graduation

Some of the weapons that Grand Rapids police seized after a high school graduation ceremony
Grand Rapids Police
Some of the weapons that Grand Rapids police seized after a high school graduation ceremony

Grand Rapids’ Police Chief credits an alert sergeant with identifying suspicious teens at a high school graduation. They were later arrested with assault weapons

Grand Rapids Police Chief Eric Winstrom says a sergeant was assisting with a large crowd at a graduation for the Link Learning virtual school held at Calvary Church on East Beltline Avenue Thursday, May 30.

He called for assistance after noticing individuals in the crowd behaving suspiciously, one wearing a surgical mask, the other a ski mask.

“The potential is that because of the presence of the uniformed police that they did avoid a tragic situation.”

When they left in a vehicle, officers pulled it over. One person ran but was caught with a bag containing an assault-style rifle and a handgun.

Two more handguns were found in the vehicle.

Officers arrested two 19-year-old men; the driver and a female passenger were not arrested.

“Just the fact we know these people were masked, heavily armed and not there in attendance for the graduation is definitely a very scary situation.”

Winstrom says they may never know the intent of the men arrested.

“I’m happy we’re not talking about what their intent was when they opened up with AR15’s into a crowd of people, and glad we’re instead saying I wonder what they intended to do with the four guns instead of trying to piece together the aftermath of a school violence incident.”

He says the department is being very proactive in taking illegal guns off the street.

“We want to make it so individuals know when they’re coming to Grand Rapids, they’re coming to a safe city but also if they’re coming with bad intentions and coming with illegally-possessed weapons, there’s a very good chance they will be apprehended and held accountable criminally.”

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