Nashville/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on April 19, 2024
Nashville Preschool Teacher Charged with Threats to 'Shoot Up' Classroom, Brings Guns to SchoolSource: Metro Nashville Police Department

A Nashville preschool was placed on lockdown last Thursday after a teacher allegedly threatened to shoot a colleague and the young students. The teacher, identified as Sheneca Cowart, 29, has been charged with multiple offenses, sparking fear and chaos at The Academy of McCrory Lane.

According to the Metro Nashville Police Department, Cowart was taken into custody after school safety officers were dispatched to the preschool at around 11 a.m. The terrifying ordeal began after Cowart threatened to "shoot up" the school and claimed to keep a firearm "on her," leading staff to act quickly to secure the school and protect the children, as reported by WSMV-TV. One teacher claimed to have overheard Cowart say, "When I start shooting, you better run."

Cowart faces one count of assault, one count of threat of mass violence at a school, and two counts of carrying a weapon onto school property. During the investigation, Cowart initially denied having a gun on her but later admitted she had one in her vehicle. Police were reported to have found a loaded gun in her purse in the classroom and a second firearm in her car, USA Today details.

Furthermore, Cowart is accused of having previously told a teacher on April 10 that she would shoot them in the "kneecaps because it would not kill them." While Cowart insisted she hadn't made any threatening statements on the day of her arrest, the allegations culminated in her capture. "The victim stated she heard the Cowart say that she was going to shoot up the school and that she keeps her gun on her," officers included in their affidavit, with a teacher corroborating the statement, WKRN reported. She has since been released from jail on a $37,000 bond.

The incident raised further concerns about school safety and gun control, especially in a setting with such young children present. It underscores the tension at the intersection where education, safety, and the law violently meet, provoking anxiety among parents and educators alike. Cowart's arrest serves as a chilling reminder of the potential threats that loom within seemingly safe environments for our children to learn and grow.