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Investigation After Gun Went off Inside High School

SOUTH CANAAN TOWNSHIP — A school police officer is off the job after his gun went off inside a high school in Wayne County. Even though no one was hurt, t...

SOUTH CANAAN TOWNSHIP -- A school police officer is off the job after his gun went off inside a high school in Wayne County.

Even though no one was hurt, that man's actions are under investigation.

Parents of students at Western Wayne High School got a call Wednesday night telling them about that morning's incident at the high school.

Now a veteran of law enforcement is suspended without pay while investigators determine whether he should be charged after his gun went off inside his office.

"At approximately 11 a.m. our school police officer, while in his office, inadvertently discharged his firearm," said the recording of Western Wayne Superintendent Clay LaCoe.

Some eight hours earlier, the school district was just starting to deal with the incident at the high school near Waymart.

The superintendent would not say how the gun went off or what school police officer Paul Semler was doing at the time since the Wayne County District Attorney is now investigating.

"We immediately interviewed the parties involved, I talked to the board of education I talked to the faculty," said LaCoe.

Around 7 p.m. Wednesday, LaCoe made the call to parents.

"Thankfully, no one was hurt and there were no students in the office or in the near vicinity."

A detective with the Wayne County District Attorney's Office was at the Western Wayne High School one day after that gun went off. That school police officer is off the job without pay until that investigation is complete.

"Well I`m sure the party wasn`t using all their smarts," said Jeff who didn't want his last name used.

Now investigators are looking into whether Semler, a retired state trooper who's been with the district for several years, should be charged with reckless endangerment all because a school staff member was in the office at the time the gun went off.

"I think he`s going to be a lot more careful next time, I don`t think it`ll happen again," added Jeff.

Now the school district will wait for the investigation to wrap up before making any decisions.

"This could have been tragic and we`re just thankful nobody was hurt," said LaCoe.

Western Wayne has two other school police officers who will handle the job while Semler is off the job, according to LaCoe.

As for the investigation, Wayne County District Attorney Janine Edwards said it will be done quickly.