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updated: 2/28/2014 11:20 PM

Man pleads guilty to possessing gun student took to Elgin school

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Daily Herald report

A Romeoville man has pleaded guilty to unlawfully possessing a gun that later was brought to an Elgin elementary school by a student, officials said.

Rashaad L. Byrd, 27, of the 200 block of South Highpoint Drive, agreed Thursday to a prison sentence of five and a half years in exchange for pleading guilty to one count of unlawful possession of a weapon by a felon, a Class 3 felony, court records show. Judge John A. Barsanti accepted the plea.

Elgin police received a report on Dec. 12 that a student was in possession of a handgun at Harriet Gifford Elementary School, 240 S. Clifton Ave., according to a news release from the Kane County state's attorney's office.

The investigation revealed that Byrd was staying with the family of the 7-year-old student who brought the gun to school, the release said, and the child had found the gun in a clothes dresser that the child regularly used. School officials confiscated the weapon after the child began showing it to schoolmates.

Byrd was not eligible to legally possess to firearm because of prior convictions for drug possession and aggravated battery in Cook County.

Byrd received credit for the 78 days he served in the Kane County jail.

"It's not just that Mr. Byrd was unlawfully in possession of the gun, it's also that he was so reckless with it by putting it in a place that was accessible to a child. We are thankful that the weapon was recovered before anyone was hurt," Kane County State's Attorney Joe McMahon said.

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