gavel_2.jpgTALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) _ A divided Florida appeal court has upheld a school search of a student who turned out to be carrying a gun.

The 2-1 decision Tuesday by a three-judge panel of the 1st District Court of Appeal came in the case of a Duval County student identified only as “M.D.''

A school resource officer had ordered the search based on nothing more than an anonymous tip. The panel's majority ruled the search was permissible because the officer is considered a school employee.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled school officials can conduct searches without probable cause that would be unconstitutional if done by police.

Judge Paul Hawkes dissented. He wrote that the appeal court for 18 years has considered resource officers no different than other law enforcement officers.