Police: Student killed staffer at Nevada school

Two boys wounded; shooter killed
Associated Press
Oct 21, 2013

 A student at a Nevada middle school opened fire on campus just before the starting bell Monday, wounding two boys and killing a staff member who was trying to protect other children, Sparks police said Monday.

Twenty to thirty students were witnesses to the tragedy that also left the lone suspected gunman dead, police said. It's unclear whether the student committed suicide, but authorities say no shots were fired by law enforcement. Police said between 150 and 200 officers, including some from as far as 60 miles away, responded to the shooting.

"In my estimation, he is a hero ... We do know he was trying to intervene," Reno Deputy Police Chief Tom Robinson said about the fallen staff member.

The motive isn't yet known. Names of the suspect and victims haven't yet been released.

"As you can imagine, the best description is chaos," Robinson said. "It's too early to say whether he was targeting people or going on an indiscriminate shooting spree."

Students from the middle school and neighboring elementary school were evacuated to the nearby high school, and classes were canceled. The middle school will remain closed for the week.

At the evacuation center, parents comforted their children.

"We came flying down here to get our kids," said Mike Fiorica, whose nephew attends the school. "... It's really chaotic. You can imagine how parents are feeling. You don't know if your kid's OK."

One of the students injured in the violence that erupted around 7:15 a.m. is out of surgery and the other is doing well, according to police.

The shooting happened on the school's campus and ended outside the school building itself, according to police.

"I was deeply saddened to learn of the horrific shooting at Sparks Middle School this morning," Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval said in a statement extending his thoughts and prayers to those affected.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, offered his condolences to those who experienced "a traumatic morning."

"No words of condolence could possibly ease the pain, but I hope it is some small comfort that Nevada mourns with them," Reid said in a statement.

The school, located in a working class neighborhood, enrolls about 700 students in 7th and 8th grades.

The violence erupted nearly a year after a gunman horrified the nation by opening fire in Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., leaving 26 dead. The Dec. 14 shooting ignited debate over how best to protect the nation's schools and whether armed teachers should be part of that equation.

In a statement on the website of Sandy Hook Promise, a gun control advocacy group, Nicole Hockley, whose son Dylan was killed in the shooting said, "It's moments like this that demand that we unite as parents to find common sense solutions that keep our children_all children_safe, and prevent these tragedies from happening again and again."

Washoe County School District held a session in the spring in light of the Connecticut tragedy to educate parents on what safety measures the district takes.

Sparks, a city of roughly 90,000 that sprung out of the railway industry, lies just east of Reno.

Mayor Geno Martini spoke at a morning press conference to assure residents that the community was safe.

"It's a tragic day in the city of Sparks," he said. "This is just an isolated incident."

 

Comments

getit right be4...

Another GFSZ shooting. Don't these people know thats against the law?

Licorice Schtick

This is Obama's fault. More guns! The solution is more gun! The solution is ALWAYS more guns!

KnuckleDragger

State: Utah
Gun Laws: Allow those with a concealed carry license to carry in and on school property. Schools cannot forbid teachers from carrying in classrooms.

Fact: Number of school shootings since law enacted. ZERO!!!

More proof that making schools a gun free zone does nothing to protect students.

yea right

job well done by the staff person..prayers to all

Simple Enough II

I wonder if the student who did the shooting was on psychotropic medications?

The Answer Person

See? This is why we need more guns everyone. If only they had been armed, this would not have happened and they could have all protected themselves.

bigsexy

A shooting in a "gun free zone?" Say it isn't so. Those "gun free zone" signs work so well!

Please liberals, make our whole country a "gun free zone" because the gun laws work so well in "gun free zones!" (sarcasm)

Prayers to all involved and their families who are affected by this tragedy.

El Guapo

So you republicans want to arm middle school students? Wonder how that would work out. If teachers were armed, the attacker will just take out teacher first. Crazy people will always be able to reak havok as they have the advantage of surprise attack and willingness to kill. Guess cops never get killed in the line of duty as they are armed, right? Whenever I read about these teachers/heroes like the one above who sacrificed themselves protecting students I cant help but think of all the republican comments on here during the SB5 debates where they were still calling teachers lazy union thugs, leaches etc.. truley makes me sick to my stomach that this hero had to put up with repubs/ fox news type propaganda the last few years.

KnuckleDragger

"Wonder how that would work out. If teachers were armed, the attacker will just take out teacher first."

I guess that would explain the attack in Texas where a school principal repelled an attacker with his own handgun. Yup, you know what your talking about. While the element of surprise decreases your chance of success, some chance is better than none. In the case of only one armed teacher you may be right, but if several are armed, there is a pretty good chance that one of them will take out the attacker, thereby decreasing the amount of carnage. Utah allows carry in the classroom and so far it has been a pretty good deterrent.

bigdad1205

Another person who misses the point. More laws won't stop this. He already broke several laws including one that says you can't kill another person. How about some education and parental responsibilty?

bigdad1205

Another person who misses the point. More laws won't stop this. He already broke several laws including one that says you can't kill another person. How about some education and parental responsibilty?

Unassumer

How about you get some education on mental illness? That would be helpful.

KnuckleDragger

So you agree that we should lock up the mentally ill instead of enacting more ineffective gun laws?

SamAdams

Anybody in law enforcement knows that there is no 100% certain way to stop even the most violent of crimes. The man (or woman) most feared by LEOs? The one who DOESN'T CARE whether or not s/he survives. Committing the crime is usually fairly easy. It's the getting away with it part that's the most difficult!

Unless we intend to build fireproof fortresses, wrap ourselves in cotton batting, and snuggle alone in the dark, there is no way to guarantee anybody's safety.

Can we improve safety in some instances? Yes. Look no further than airbags or pasteurization. But do people still die in car accidents or get food poisoning? Of course. The same principle applies here. Should mental health issues be better diagnosed and treated? Yes. Should schools have armed (and trained) personnel? Sure. But there's always the kid or adult who snaps with little or no warning, and there's always the bad guy who's willing to risk everything to go out in a blaze of chaos.

Another law (or set of them) is meaningless. You can't legislate absolute security unless you DO intend to lock everybody in those aforementioned fortresses. And how is a life like THAT worth living, eh?

lugnut2511

It's so very sad, to see children turning on children like this. What has this country done to these children. It was never ever like this when I was in school. Something is very wrong here and it needs a fix fast.

KnuckleDragger

Since the Democrat party is in bed with Hollywood and the video game industry, nothing will ever get done. What people don't realize is that the military uses games like Call of Duty to desensitize Infantrymen to killing. If these games have that effect on grown men, one can only imagine what it does to a young, developing mind.

Informed

How about holding parents responsible for what video games, movies, and tv shows their kids watch?