Los Angeles County Sheriff's Chief Alex Villanueva said they already have the shooting suspect in custody who left at least two dead (a 16-year-old student and a 14-year-old student) on Thursday morning at Saugus School High School in Santa Clarita, California. The detainee, who is seriously ill in a hospital, tried to take his own life by shooting himself in the head, after shooting five of his teammates.
"The video evidence shows that he took the gun from his backpack, shot the five students and then shot himself in the head," Villanueva reported at a press conference this noon. The suspect turns 16 this Thursday.
The shooting occurred at 07:38 am local time, inside the school premises, located at 21900 Centurion Way, in Santa Clarita, and with an enrollment of some 2,700 students, mostly white. Law enforcement officers arrived at the institute two minutes later, where they found six teenagers between 14 and 16 with gunshot wounds.RELATED
The attacker left 5 people injured, of which two have died, according to the Henry Mayo Hospital, where they were entered.
"Update: a dead patient. Two patients in critical condition. A patient in good condition," reads the tweet of the medical center.
Television images taken from the air by local channels showed students walking in a row while escorted out of the high school premises by armed police.
“My daughter heard four shots. It was a very chaotic situation, I hope that the Sheriff will take quick control and arrest this individual, ”a father told Univision 34.
Villanueva reported in the morning that the suspect was one of the first to be transferred to a local medical center. He mentioned that the injury he presents "looks like a bullet", but that it did not fire as part of the police operation that was implemented in the squad. It is not clear if the young man tried to commit suicide or was accidentally injured.
On the young man arrested and his motivations, Villanueva said “that is going to be the result of the investigation, and the homicide detectives are going to take charge of this case and they are going to have to look for all the information of their past, their present friends, his social networks, all the information available to see what the motive was and who were the people he was trying to hurt. ”
A .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol believed to have been used by the detainee was found inside the school. The gun no longer had bullets when it was recovered by the authorities. It has not yet been determined how many shots or where in the institution they were made.
Deputy Chief Sheriff Tim Murakami said rumors will be investigated that the Saugus school gunman posted threats on social media. "If you ever find out about published threats, notify us as soon as possible. It will result in an immediate investigation. We have successfully avoided possible acts of violence as a result of these reports," he said in a Tweet.
At the moment, the sheriffs reviewed two publications on social networks, but determined that they are not related to what happened in Santa Clarita.
Murakami also mentioned that they would interview "each student" before handing them over to their parents. "We need to conduct a thorough investigation," he stressed.
Laura Eimiller, spokeswoman for the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in Los Angeles, said the agency "is responding with many resources" to the shooting in Santa Clarita.
"We live in a world that is no longer the same"
The researchers said they are reviewing the school's safety videos, as well as the recordings the students made with their cell phones. The suspect's home, in Santa Clarita, is being searched, although it has not been revealed if they have found evidence in the place.
Carlos, the father of a student on campus, said his son notified him through text messages that something was happening at the institution. He told him he was fine. “The first information I received was from him. Five minutes later I received information from the school district, ”he said.
"We live in a world that is no longer the same one we knew before … It is sad that my children have to live this new situation because of the simple fact that this person (the suspect) does not know how to handle his speeches," he added.
The Arana couple managed to reunite with their daughter in Central Park, where they transferred the students. With tears, the young woman related what happened: “It is very sad because everything was calm and suddenly they take one's life. Five minutes before I was going to go to the bathroom, but I didn't go. I was going to go to a bathroom where the shooting began and I thank God I didn't go because it could have been me. It is very sad".
His father told Univision 34 that his daughter called him at 7:42 am to let him know what was happening. “It's something I've seen on television, but I haven't felt it in my own flesh. I felt my skin cracked when he said, "Daddy, I love you." I said: "Me too." It's horrible, ”he described.
This Hispanic said that in the morning the desire to pray was born, without knowing why. Now he attributes it to the miracle of having his daughter alive. "I said to the Lord:" Where you want my children to be, take care of them, protect them. " And that made my daughter not go to the bathroom. That's why I have her here with me. ”
Amid the initial confusion, the Police had urged the residents of the area not to leave their homes until further notice. There were 24 ambulances, 1 helicopter and dozens of police officers.
Governor Gavin Newsom took the opportunity to ask the leader of the Republican majority in the Senate, Mitch McConnell, to push for legislation that restricts the use of weapons.
“We simply shouldn't have to fear for the lives of our children when we leave them at school. @senatemajldr How many more lives will be lost? How many more shootings will we have to endure? We need a common sense weapons reform. NOW, ”he demanded.
Democratic presidential candidate Kamala Harris expressed concern about what happened in that town in northern Los Angeles County.
“With a broken heart and praying for Santa Clarita. I am incredibly grateful to the emergency bodies that are on the scene of this active situation, ”he said through a Tweet. “Our children and communities are being terrified. We cannot accept this. ”
The authorities noted that all students are being transferred to two reunification centers for their parents to pick them up. In one of them, Central Park, the images of the press showed emotional scenes when families hugged and cried for what happened.
In photos: Shooting in a high school in Santa Clarita leaves at least one dead and several injured
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