One student is critically wounded, two others injured, in a rural California high school where, just hours before, school officials had been reviewing lockdown procedures for such a case.
Alex Horvath/The Bakersfield Californian/AP
A teacher at Taft Union High School in Taft, Calif., is being hailed as a hero by local officials for “talking down” the student who brought a 12-gauge shotgun to school Thursday morning, allegedly with at least two student targets in mind.
The incident – in which one student was critically injured and a student and teacher received minor injuries – is the latest to draw attention to school safety, less than a month after a gunman killed 20 elementary-school students and six educators, before killing himself in Newtown, Conn.
Halfway through first period, the 16-year-old suspect walked into the school’s science building, went to a second-floor classroom, and fired at a fellow 16-year-old, who was later reported to be in stable condition, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said at a press conference.
The shooter tried unsuccessfully to shoot another student, whom he named, and had perhaps 20 rounds of ammunition in his pockets, Sheriff Youngblood said. The teacher and a campus supervisor who showed up at the classroom during the incident engaged in a dialogue with the shooter – giving other students a chance to leave the classroom and ultimately leading the gunman to put his weapon down.
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