The Georgia school shooting on Tuesday ended with 20-year-old suspect Michael Brandon Hill arrested and all Atlanta-area elementary school children and staff members safe. The Georgia school shooting happened just a week into the new school year at Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, a few miles east of Atlanta, reported Time on Aug. 20, 2013.
The elementary school, which has more than 800 students in pre-kindergarten to fifth grade has a set of double doors where visitors must be buzzed in and show identification to a camera to be allowed in. The 20-year-old suspect, Michael Brandon Hill, is believed to have slipped in behind an employee at the Georgia elementary school.
However, he never made it past the front office.
Around 1 p.m., 20-year-old Michael Brandon Hill confronted the elementary school’s office staff where he held one or two employees captive for a time.
“A woman in the office called WSB-TV to say the gunman asked her to contact the Atlanta station and police. WSB said during the call, shots were heard in the background. Assignment editor Lacey Lecroy said she spoke with the woman who said she was alone with the man and his gun was visible.”
The McNair elementary office worker also told Lacey LeCroy that “the gunman wanted Channel 2 Action News to ‘start filming as police die’."
In an interview on ABC’s “World News with Diane Sawyer,” school clerk Antoinette Tuff said she worked to convince the gunman to put down his weapons and ammunition.
Rather than escalating the situation, school clerk Antoinette Tuff spoke about her own life, about how her marriage fell apart after 33 years, about the “roller coaster” experience of opening her own business, and about how everyone is facing impossible challenges. She told him, “OK, we all have situations in our lives. It was going to be OK. If I could recover, he could, too.”
Then school clerk Antoinette Tuff said that “she asked the suspect to put his weapons down, empty his pockets and backpack on the floor.”
“I told the police he was giving himself up. I just talked him through it,” she said.
Antoinette Tuff told ABC that 20-year-old Michael Brandon Hill appeared to hear her. “He told me he was sorry for what he was doing. He was willing to die.”
One of the other teachers who had unknowingly come across Michael Bandon Hill when she stopped by the office was able to hear him say, “I’m not here to harm any staff or any parents or students. He said he wanted to speak to a police officer.”
While school clerk Antoinette Tuff spoke to the Georgia school shooter, all elementary school children were safely evacuated by faculty members and authorities. Police officers cut a hole in a fence to make sure students running from the building could get even farther away to a nearby street and SWAT teams then went from classroom to classroom to make sure people were out.
During the Georgia school shooting, 20-year-old Michael Brandon Hill fired at least a half-dozen shots from the rifle from inside McNair at officers who were swarming the campus outside. Officers returned fire when the man was alone and they had a clear shot, said DeKalb County Police Chief Cedric L. Alexander at a news conference.
By the time the Georgia school shooter surrendered, several weapons, including the AK-47, were apprehended.
The Georgia school shooting suspect is facing charges including aggravated assault on a police officer, terroristic threats and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.