MARYLAND (Reuters) – A student shot and critically wounded two fellow students at a Maryland high school before a campus security officer ended the attack by wounding the shooter yesterday morning.
The shooter shot a male student and a female student at Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County, and was then wounded by a campus security officer, county Sheriff Timothy Cameron told MSNBC. All three were in critical condition at hospitals.
The reason for the shooting was unclear, Mr Cameron said, adding, “We don’t know the relationship; we don’t know the motivation.”
“Please pray for us. There was a loud sound and everyone started screaming and running,” a young woman named Mollie Davis, who identified herself as a student at Great Mills High School, posted on Twitter.
The violence was the latest in a decades-long series of shootings at US schools and colleges, coming a little more than a month after 17 students and faculty were killed in a rampage at a Florida high school.
Great Mills High School is in St. Mary’s County, which is about 110 km south of Washington.
The shooting occurred amid a re-energised national debate over school shootings in the United States following the February 14 attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. It was the deadliest mass shooting at a US high school.
“You never think it’ll be your school and then it is,” Mollie Davis wrote on Twitter. “Great Mills is a wonderful school and somewhere I am proud to go. Why us?”
Emma Gonzalez, a senior at Stoneman Douglas High School who survived last month’s shootings, wrote on Twitter, “We are here for you, students of Great Mills, together we can stop this from ever happening again.”
The shooting came four days before the March For Our Lives – partly organised by student survivors of the Parkland rampage – takes place in Washington to urge lawmakers to pass tighter gun control laws.
A student who said his name was Jonathan Freese said in a telephone interview on CNN that he had been on lockdown with classmates for nearly an hour, but he did not hear gunshots himself. The interview ended as police came to his classroom door.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan said in a statement: “Our prayers are with students, school personnel, and first responders.”