Bang! You're suspended: Maryland children punished for making gun gestures

Published January 16, 2013


Two 6-year-old boys from Maryland were suspended from their school for making gun gestures during a harmless game of pretend, leaving parents outraged.

Officials at a Talbot County Elementary School disciplined the boys after they were playing a game of cops and robbers according to Baltimore station WJZ-TV. It was the second such incident in the state in recent weeks.

“It’s ridiculous.” Julia Merchant, mother of one of the children said to the channel.

Last month, 6-year-old Rodney Lynch was suspended from his Montgomery County school for making the same gesture twice.

“Just pointing your fingers like this, and then she did the 'pow' sound, and I just went like that and then I got sent to the office again,” the boy told WJZ-TV at the time.

“They’re saying he threatened a student, threatened to shoot a student,” the boy’s father, Rodney Lynch Sr. said after the suspension. "He was playing."

A child psychologist told WJZ-TV that the minds of most 6-year-olds are not developed enough to understand why adults might be sensitive to the gesture.