OXFORD TOWNSHIP, Mich. Authorities say a 15-year-old student opened fire on his high school in Michigan on Tuesday, killing three students and injuring eight others in an attack that caused teachers to barricade classrooms and students to send panicked messages to family and relatives. . friends.
The shooting at Oxford High School in Oxford Township, a close-knit community in a suburb about 35 miles north of Detroit, unfolded around 6 p.m. 1 p.m., when a boy, another student at the school, began firing a semi-automatic pistol, according to the Oakland County Sheriff’s Office.
“This wound will never go away,” Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard told a news conference Tuesday night.
The three deceased students are 16-year-old Tate Myre, 14-year-old Hana St. Juliana and 17-year-old Madisyn Baldwin. Ant died in a patrol car on its way to the hospital, Bouchard said.
“The deputy saw that it was such a serious wound that there was no time to wait,” he said.
Of the eight others who were shot, three remain in critical condition: a 15-year-old boy, a 17-year-old girl and a 14-year-old girl who is on a respirator.
“It looks very hard on this young girl,” Bouchard said. A 14-year-old boy is in serious condition, the sheriff’s office added.
Seven of the injured were students. The eighth was a 47-year-old teacher at the school who has been discharged from the hospital.
The 9mm pistol that the suspect used during the shooting was purchased by his father on Black Friday, November 26, according to Bouchard. It was loaded with seven cartridges of ammunition when police arrested the suspect.
The Oakland County Sheriff’s Office said it received over 100 calls about an active shooter starting around noon. 12.51 local time. Within three minutes, the suspect was remanded in custody, McCabe said.
America’s gun violence ‘epidemic’: Oxford High in Michigan is the 28th school admission in 2021
A deputy attached to the school as the contact person assisted. The suspect fired about 15 to 20 shots during the incident, McCabe said.
“He gave us no resistance when he was remanded in custody,” McCabe said. “It all lasted five minutes.”
Oxford High School students described a chaotic scene in which a voice over the intercom said there was an active shooter.
At first, they did not know if it was a drill, they said.
When they realized it was not, they were struck by fear and panic. The teachers locked and locked doors and covered windows. Students hid. Some with cell phones sent silent text messages to warn their parents and friends.
Abbey Hodder, a 15-year-old second student, went into chemistry class when she thought she heard glass break.
“My teacher ran out a bit and was about to run around,” she said. “The next thing I knew, I saw him push tables. It’s part of the school protocol to barricade, so we all knew, barricades, barricades down. And we all started pushing tables.”
They then lined up along a wall and grabbed something to throw, also part of the active shooting practice they have been doing, Hodder said. But not long after, she added, her teacher told them to jump out of a window and run.
Oxford High School, which has about 1,800 students, has no metal detectors, Bouchard said. He said there will be a “huge amount of video footage” from the school.
Authorities did not say whether the suspect was targeting anyone in particular, nor did they release any information about a motive. McCabe said authorities were investigating whether there were any warnings before the shooting or whether the student had any history of violence. He said students and others would be questioned.
Bouchard said police were not aware of any previous concerns or threats surrounding the school before the shooting.
The suspect, whose name was not released, claimed his right to remain silent and refused to speak in depth with authorities, McCabe said. He said the boy’s parents “did not want their son to talk to us and they hired a lawyer,” adding that since the boy is a minor, he could not be questioned unless a parent approved it.
The sheriff’s office said police carried out a search warrant at the suspect’s home and seized his phone. The suspect is on suicide watch, Bouchard said.
Isabel Flores told WJBK, a local Fox affiliate, that she and other students heard gunshots and saw a student bleed from his face. They ran from the area through the back of the school, said Flores, 15, a ninth grader.
Robin Redding, a parent of a 12th grader, said her son stayed home Tuesday. She said he had heard threats of a shooting at the school.
“This could not just be random,” she said. “He just said, ‘Mom, I’m not feeling well. None of the kids we go to school with go today.”
Redding expressed concern about the safety of the school in general and did not provide details on what her son had heard. Authorities acknowledged reports of possible violence at the school, but said speculation and rumors were spreading on social media. “We’ll get to the bottom of this,” McCabe said, noting that authorities searched the suspect’s home that evening.
Hundreds from the local community gathered at three different guards Tuesday night looking for comfort and meaning amid the devastation.
They were excited about the times – students, parents and community members who never thought anything like this could happen in their small enclave village in northern Oakland County.
“That’s what you read about in the news that happens elsewhere,” said Kim Kozel, 51, of Lake Orion, one of about 300 people who attended a prayer service at Kensington Church in Lake Orion.
“I do not think I have dealt with it yet,” Kozel said, rattling. “It’s been a lot.”
“Almost all of Oxford hurts,” Pastor Jesse Holt told a crowd of more than 200 at LakePoint Community Church in Oxford Township. As the seats ran dry, dozens were in charge of the service. Several held each other for comfort. Then, while sharing a common flame, they lit candles that each had been given.
“I’m shocked,” Tim Throne, Oxford Community Schools superintendent, said after the shooting. “It’s devastating.”
Throne said the school does not have metal detectors and that he did not think there had been discussions about them. McCabe said authorities knew how the student brought the weapon, but did not elaborate.
Whitmer was one of several elected officials expressing condolences to the victims.
“Violence is a public health crisis that requires life every day. We have the tools to reduce gun violence in Michigan. This is a time when we can come together and help our children feel safe at school,” Whitmer said in a statement. .
The shooting at Oxford High School is it 28th – and deadliest – school shooting this year, according to Education Week, which tracks shootings at schools where there are firearm-related injuries or deaths.
Of these 28 shootings, 20 have occurred since August, with many students returning to personal learning for the first time since the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. There were 10 registered shootings in 2020.
President Joe Biden was informed of the shooting after visiting a technical school in Rosemount, Minnesota, to highlight his infrastructure law.
“My heart goes out to the families during the unimaginable grief of losing a loved one,” Biden said. “You need to know that that whole community just needs to be in a state of shock right now.”
Everytown for Gun Safety, a national nonprofit organization that pushes for stricter gun control, said the largest number of shootings on school grounds and people shot since the organization has been seen over the past many months. began tracking such incidents in 2013.
The organization said September and October were draws for most events recorded in a month – 32.
This year, there have been at least 651 mass shootings – defined as an incident in which four or more people are shot or killed, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which tracks such incidents.
Starring: Joey Garrison, USA TODAY; Associated Press