Colorado students hold protests, walkouts to push for stricter gun laws

Posted at 12:03 PM, Feb 21, 2018
and last updated 2018-02-22 00:34:30-05

DENVER – Students from the metro Denver area held protests and walkouts Wednesday in solidarity with schoolchildren from across the country who are demanding stronger gun regulations and protections in schools.

A group of students from Littleton High School held a protest Wednesday morning demanding action—with dozens saying they shouldn’t have to fear going to school. There were also walkouts at Chaparral, Thunder Ridge and Highlands Ranch high schools.

“It has so much been just condolences in the past, and we want action,” said one student. “We’re pushing for metal detectors, locks on certain doors, bulletproof glass and other things to defend ourselves.”

That group and other students from across the Denver area also held a “lie-in” at the state Capitol around noon Wednesday ahead of debate in a House committee over a handful of pro-gun bills introduced by Republicans expected to happen Wednesday afternoon.

President Donald Trump is also expected to host survivors of the Columbine shooting at the White House for a “listening session” about gun measures Wednesday afternoon. Also expected to be in attendance are students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, where 17 people were shot and killed last week, and survivors and parents of Sandy Hook.

Trump said “we must do more to protect our children” Tuesday as he announced that he’d directed the Justice Department to implement a ban on devices like bump stocks, which were used in the Las Vegas shooting to kill nearly 60 people and injure hundreds of others.

Denver has already banned the devices, though in the three days police have offered take-backs, zero bump stocks had been returned. Boulder is also considering banning the devices.

The demonstrations in Denver also come amid a slew of arrests in Colorado for school threats that have happened in the week since the Florida shooting. The arrest of a student accused of posting a violent threat against Bear Creek High School late Tuesday, and Cherry Creek Schools were also investigating a threat at Grandview High School. At least four other Colorado students have been arrested in connection to threats since last Friday.

Denver7's Meghan Lopez and Russell Haythorn contributed to this report.