At least 10 people are dead after a 17-year-old student allegedly opened fire at Santa Fe High School in Texas this morning, sending students fleeing for their lives, the governor said.
Ten others were wounded, including a police officer who is in critical condition, officials said.
Gov. Greg Abbott called the shooting “one of the most heinous attacks that we’ve ever seen in the history of Texas schools.”
The suspect, 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis, is in custody and has been charged with capital murder, officials said. The suspect allegedly wrote in journals that he wanted to carry out the shooting and then commit suicide, but he gave himself up to authorities, according to Abbott.
There were no warning signs and the suspect doesn’t have a criminal history, officials said.
A second individual, a person of interest, has been detained, officials said.
Two weapons were used in the massacre — a shotgun and a .38 revolver — both of which appear to be legally owned by the suspect’s father, the governor said.
“I have no information if the father was aware the son had taken these weapons from the father,” Abbott added.
Explosive devices were also found at the school, and devices including a Molotov cocktail were found in a car and a home, authorities said.
This morning’s shooting took place in an art class, witnesses said
“I heard the [fire] alarms and everybody ran out,” tenth-grader Dakota Shrader told KTRK. “At first all we heard was ‘run, run,’ and next thing you know we hear, ‘boom, boom, boom.’”
“Everybody started running,” she said, “and I tried to make it to the safest place that I could as fast as I can. I called my mom right away.”
“She couldn’t breathe, she was having an asthma attack,” her mom added. “I didn’t even know where to find her.”
Among the injured is school district police officer John Barnes, who is in critical condition. Barnes, a retired Houston police officer, was shot in the arm and suffered major bleeding, hospital officials said.
Two school district officers on campus were able to confront the shooter early on, authorities said.
As students lined up outside the building, ambulances, helicopters and federal agents swarmed the school in Santa Fe, between Galveston and Houston.
Cameras in the school are expected to provide a lot of information, said officials.
This is the sixth fatal shooting at a school since the Parkland, Florida, high school shooting that killed 17 students and staff in February. The Parkland massacre prompted a national debate about gun reform and school safety.
Just last month students at Santa Fe High School participated in a nationwide school walkout against school gun violence. The walkout was held on April 20 — the anniversary of the 1999 Columbine High School massacre that killed 13.