A staff member at Shelton Elementary in Dallas, Georgia, let it be known Thursday that a teacher smelled of alcohol, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
A school resource officer ran an alco-sensor test on Melanie Bullard, and she tested positive for alcohol, the Dallas New Era reported, adding that the 39-year-old also tested positive in a test administered a short time later.
District officials then conducted a search of her classroom and nearby areas for open containers of alcohol, Paulding County Sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. Ashley Henson told the West Georgia Neighbor, when they came upon her purse on the floor under her desk.
And inside her purse officials found a loaded semiautomatic handgun, Henson told the Neighbor. A school resource officer took possession of it, the New Era said.
Bullard — who teaches kindergarten, according to the staff website — was arrested charges of reckless conduct and possession of a weapon on school property, the Journal-Constitution reported. Both charges are misdemeanors, the sheriff's office told the Neighbor.
She was released Friday on $3,500 bond, Henson told the Journal-Constitution.
School district officials declined to comment on Bullard's employment status because it's a personnel issue, a spokeswoman told the Neighbor. District policy states that employees who test positive for alcohol use on school property can go through medical treatment or resign, the Neighbor said.