Khalid Caraballo and some friends were shooting "Zombie Hunter" airsoft guns at targets and at each other in the front yard of the 13-year-old's Virginia Beach home, when a neighbor, the mother of one of the kids playing in the "airsoft gun war," called the cops to complain.
"This is not a real [gun], but it makes people uncomfortable," the unidentified woman later told WAVY. "I know that it makes me (uncomfortable), as a mom, to see a boy pointing a gun."
That 911 call set off a chain reaction that resulted in Khalid getting suspended from Larkspur Middle School along with two other boys.
Now he and his friend Aidan Clark are being threatened with expulsion for the remainder of the school year for "possession, handling and use of a firearm."
Khalid acknowledges hitting a boy with one of the gun's plastic pellets, but says the claim that he fired at the school bus station that is located 70 yards from his home is false.
"[I]t's unfair because we were in our yard," he said. "This had nothing to do with school. I didn't have anything at school at anytime."
Khalid's mom Solangel agrees with her son.
"My son is my private property," she said. "He does not become the school's property until he goes to the bus stop, gets on the bus, and goes to school."
Solangel admits her son disobeyed her by using the gun without her permission, but insists she should be the one to punish him.
A Virginia Beach Police rep said the "juveniles" involved would be in violation of the city code if there were not exercising "reasonable care" while firing the "pneumatic gun."
The code defines "reasonable care" as ensuring that all projectiles are "contained on the property by a fence or backstop."
The 911 caller acknowledged that Khalid was using a net to catch the pellets.
"It's terrible," Khalid said. "I won't get the chance to go to a good college. It's on your school record. The school said I had possession of a firearm. They aren't going to ask me any questions. They are going to think it was a real gun, and I was trying to hurt someone. They will say 'oh, we can't accept you.'"
Update 2:26 p.m.: Khalid and Aidan have both been handed what the school calls "long-term suspensions" through June. There will be another hearing in January that could allow them to return early. Until then, Aidan will be homeschooled, per his dad, and Khalid will be sent to an alternative school.
[video via WAVY]