COLUMBIA (WACH / AP) - Five handguns were seized from the dorm room of a University of South Carolina freshman who was arrested Tuesday and suspended.
Officers with the University of South Carolina Division of Law Enforcement received information Tuesday that a 17-year-old from Walterboro was suspected of possessing a gun inside his room in Maxcy residence hall.
According to the incident report, a Resident Advisor told officers around 4:30 p.m. Tuesday that a Maxcy resident mentioned there may be a student with weapons on the second floor of the dorm.
Responding officers located the suspect and conducted a search of his room and vehicle.
The incident report says one Smith and Wesson 38, one Taurus 38, one GSG 1011 22 cal, one Highpoint 9mm, and one Glock 17 9mm were located in a green bag that was in the closet of the room. A set of brass knuckles was also located in the room.
Discovery of the handguns resulted in the arrest of the freshman, who is charged with possession of firearms on school property and was transported to the Alvin S. Glenn Detention Center.
Authorities say the suspect has been released on a $20,000 surety bond and is currently with his parents out of town. Steps have been taken to ensure that he can not return or gain access to campus. The suspect is also restricted from contacting students, faculty or staff.
The school's associate director of law enforcement and safety, Scott Prill, says there is no reason to think the student was planning an attack.
â??We are pleased to see that the programs and processes we have in place worked as they should to recognize and address unlawful activity,â?? said Dennis Pruitt vice president for student affairs. â??Our bystander program worked and law enforcement was notified. Officers responded quickly and handled the matter appropriately, and our housing and student affairs staff has mobilized to provide counseling or other services to those students who request them.â??
The teen faces up to five years in prison and a $5,000 fine if he is convicted.
Freshmen began moving into campus last Friday. Classes start Thursday.
It was not clear if the teen has an attorney.
The incident is under investigation.
Students, faculty and staff are always encouraged to report unlawful or suspicious activity immediately to law enforcement by dialing 803-777-4215 or 911.
(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)