Three South Aiken High School students were taken into custody today about 8:45 a.m. after Aiken Public Safety officers found a gun in their car.

The students - two of them 17 and the other a juvenile - never entered the school building, said Principal Bryan Skipper. Soon after, he sent out a robo-call to all parents.

"We wanted to make parents aware this did occur, and that the students had no contact with other students," Skipper said. "It was handled by law enforcement and administration outside the school."

He said a former South Aiken parent had earlier notified the school about the situation. The parent indicated having pulled up next to the students' car on the highway and saw a revolver in the car, Skipper said.

"The kids had ID badges and based on their descriptions, we were able to identify who they were," Skipper said.

The School Resource Officer and back-up Public Safety officers were waiting for the students and apprehended them, the principal said. "We're grateful for the former parent," he said. "Without that information, we would have had no knowledge of the situation."