NEWPORT NEWS, Va. (WAVY) - Police say an armed student allegedly approached a teen inside of a school bathroom Tuesday and attempted to rob him.
According to Lou Thurston with the Newport News Police Department, shortly after 1 p.m. a 17-year-old student said he had been the victim of an attempted robbery inside a men's bathroom at Menchville High School.
The victim told police the suspect pulled out a handgun and demanded his property. When the suspect realized the student had nothing of value, the suspect left the school and was last seen walking toward a neighborhood close to the school.
Michelle Price with Newport News Public Schools says Menchville H.S. was not placed on lockdown and the victim was able to identify the suspect following the incident. Price says an automated message was sent out to parents alerting them of the incident at approximately 5 p.m. Tuesday afternoon.
Price says the school's resource officer took over after the student reported the incident.
Robbery detectives responded to the school to conduct the investigation and they were able to identify a suspect. Warrants for one count each of robbery, use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and possession of a firearm on school grounds are on file for Latavis Dethomas Crocker, 18, with a last known address in the 500 block of Coral Court in Newport News.
Price told WAVY.com Crocker is a part-time student at Menchville High School and is classified as a senior.
Thurston says the investigation is ongoing and no injuries were reported, however, some students expressed concerns about safety.
'They do like book bag checks, and they come around with the little metal [wand] but they do that like once every month. I guess that's keeping it safe," student Alex Mizelle said.
Price says students are randomly checked by wand metal detectors.
Thurston emphasized the importance of parents enforcing safety at home.
"I can't stress enough that parents need to be having conversations with their children," Thurston said. "We can't do it all. The school folks cant do it all."
This isn't the first time Crocker has been accused of a violent crime involving a firearm. In May, Crocker was arrested on charges of robbery, carjacking, abduction, three counts of use of a firearm in the commission of a felony and three counts of conspiracy to commit a felony in connection to a carjacking in May.
Those charges were later nolle prosequi. Charges against a co-defendent, Erick Jones, Jr., were also nolle prosequi, meaning prosecutors were unwilling to pursue the charges.
If you have any information about the crime, contact Crime Line at 1-888-LOCK-U-UP.
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