- Two students were killed and three others were injured on Thursday when a 16-year-old gunman opened fire at his California high school, authorities said.
- The shooter was also in “grave” condition and being treated at a hospital after shooting himself in the head, Capt. Kent Wegener of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said.
- Wegener said the weapon was a .45-calibre semiautomatic pistol that had “no more rounds in it” by the time authorities found it.
- He added that the motive for the shooting was unclear but that Thursday was the suspect’s 16th birthday.
- One student told Insider she arrived at school to see crowds running away. “That will forever scare me and all my peers,” she said.
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Two students were killed and three others were injured on Thursday when a 16-year-old gunman opened fire at his California high school and then shot himself in the head, authorities said.
Sheriff Alex Villanueva of the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department told reporters that first responders arrived at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita around 7:40 a.m. and discovered six people with gunshot wounds in the quad. They were treated at the scene and then transported to local hospitals, he said.
One of the injured people turned out to be the suspect, who was in “grave” condition but was being treated at a hospital, Villanueva said. He described the suspect as an Asian male who was a student at Saugus High School. The suspect died on Friday, police told the Associated Press.
Villanueva said police executed a search warrant at the suspect’s residence.
Capt. Kent Wegener said Thursday was the suspect’s 16th birthday.
Wegener told reporters that the weapon was a .45-calibre semiautomatic pistol that had “no more rounds in it” by the time authorities discovered it. Video from the incident reviewed by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department showed the suspect drawing the handgun from his backpack and shooting several students before he turned the gun on himself.
Wegener said the motive for the shooting was unclear. He added that the suspect’s girlfriend and mother were at the sheriff’s station speaking with detectives.
Two of the victims, a 16-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy, died. Their identities haven’t been released.
Authorities said the other victims, a 14-year-old girl, a 15-year-old girl, and a 14-year-old boy, were in stable condition as of 3 p.m. local time.
‘That will forever scare me and all my peers’
Melissa Santillan, a 15-year-old sophomore, told Insider she arrived at school around 7:40 a.m. to the sight of crowds of students running away.
She said she and her friends still don’t know who was shot.
“All my friends get to school early, and I called my best friend, and all I heard was him running for his life, saying he was OK and he was running to safety,” Santillan said. “That will forever scare me and all my peers.”
The Santa Clarita sheriff’s station said there was only one suspect.
Los Angeles County Undersheriff Tim Murakami said every student at the school would be interviewed before being released to their parents.
“We need to conduct a thorough investigation,” Murakami said. “Why every student? They could either be a witness, provide important information about the shooter or a possible motive.”
Photos and videos showed students evacuating the building, holding their arms above their heads.
The Santa Clarita sheriff’s station said some surrounding schools were locked down after the gunfire broke out.
Local news outlets aired aerial footage of several police vehicles surrounding a nearby house, which authorities confirmed was the suspect’s.
Saugus High School, about 30 miles northwest of Los Angeles, had 2,441 students enrolled during the 2017-18 school year and employed 94 teachers.
The White House told reporters on Thursday that President Donald Trump was monitoring the situation and encouraged those in the Santa Clarita area to follow authorities’ advice.
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.