UVA students freed from gun charges

Albemarle County Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Camblos dropped all charges against four UVA students who were arrested for brandishing a BB gun on campus last spring, a week after the Virginia Tech shooting, according to The Daily Progress. In exchange for dropping the charges, each student has to perform 50 hours of community service and pay roughly $405 to cover the police response and reimburse a student for her medical bills after she became so panicked that she sought treatment at the UVA Medical Center.

On April 23, four students used a BB gun—a replica .45-caliber semi-automatic pistol—as a prop while filming a movie project for their Japanese 201 class. After reports from witnesses of a gunman in Wilsdorf Hall, 25 UVA and city police approached Wilsdorf with guns drawn. Minutes later the police evacuated the building.

The four students—Christopher Allen Smith, Caroline Choe, Eric Chau and Jerry Hsieh—were each facing a charge of brandishing a firearm, a misdemeanor that carries a maximum penalty of one year in jail and a fine of $2,500.

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