Authorities are trying to determine why a Grady High School student brought a gun to school causing a shooting in the school’s parking lot. Atlanta police say 17 year old Morgan Tukes was outside, between the gym and courtyard, when she accidently shot herself in the thigh Wednesday morning around 9:45. The shooting caused a two and a half hour school lockdown and scared parents were notified about the incident by Atlanta Public School’s Twitter and automatic phone message systems. Many students stayed on lockdown in the school’s theater as police and Atlanta Public School official investigated the shooting.
It’s not exactly clear how Tukes concealed the small handgun from teachers and students, but she told authorities that she arrived at school late and did not go through the school’s metal detectors. It is believed that another student may have let Tukes into the school by a door not armed with a metal detector. Some students told FOX 5 News that gun may have been in Tukes’ pocket.
Parents naturally rushed to the school to check on their children. The school did allow parents to check out students early if they wanted to, but classes resumed their normal schedule following the lockdown. No other students were injured during the incident.
Some parents say they did not receive the school’s automatic phone messages, and many communicated with their teens by text messaging.
As the incident remains under investigation, parents question school safety procedures. School Superintendent Erroll Davis said the district will be meeting to address this issue.
This is the second campus shooting for Atlanta Public Schools this year. Last month, a 14 year old was shot at Price Middle School.
In a statement Wednesday, Superintendent Davis said, “A school is not designed to be fortresses, but to be a place of learning”.
Authorities are still not sure why Morgan Tukes brought the gun to school. After treatment at Grady Memorial Hospital for her self-inflicted gunshot wound, Atlanta police transported Tukes to the Fulton County Jail. Tukes has been charged with carrying weapons within a school safety zone, reckless conduct, possession of a pistol by a minor and disruption of a public school.