Sparks Middle School, Sparks, Nevada: A student gunman opened fire early this morning at the Nevada school, killing a staffer and wounding at least two others, reports Fox News today. The shooter was left dead, and the community was left reeling after yet another incident of gun violence in our nation’s schools.
Each of the two injured, both male students, were in critical condition at Renown Regional Hospital. One has now been updated to fair after coming out of surgery.
Kyle Nucum, a student, told the Reno Gazette-Journal newspaper that he heard “a pop, like a loud pop, and everybody was screaming.” Nucum said the shooter was confronted by a teacher who instructed him to put the weapon, but instead the shooter fired and killed the teacher.
“The teacher fell and everybody ran away,” Nucum told the newspaper. “We ran across the field to get somewhere safe, and while we were running we heard about four or five more shots. This lady let us into her house.”
The shooting occurred just after 7 a.m. this morning, before all students had reached their homerooms. Between 150 and 200 officers converged at the school.
The Sparks Police Department posted a note on its web site shortly after the shooting that said: “Stay away from Sparks Middle School, 2275 18th St. We believe the suspect has been neutralized.” The note was later removed.
Police did not say whether the student shooter was killed by police or if he turned the weapon on himself. Local authorities however say no shots were fired by law enforcement, and recent updates now say the shooter turned the gun on himself in front of the other children, says Fox News.
The male teacher, a mathematics teacher who has yet to be named, attempted to shield other students.
“In my estimation, he is a hero,” said Tim Robinson, deputy chief of the Sparks police.
“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.”
KRNV, the NBC affiliate in Reno, reported that the school had been cleared, citing officials on the scene.
“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.
Sparks, a city of roughly 90,000, is just east of Reno. Approximately 700 students attend the school in the seventh and eighth grades.