Officer's quick action stopped Maryland school shooter in seconds, sheriff says
Officer's quick action stopped Maryland school shooter in seconds, sheriff says
21 March, 2018, 08:19
A student who shot and critically wounded two fellow students at a Maryland high school on March 20 morning, has died after exchanging gunfire with a campus security officer, the county sheriff said. Officials say the 16-year-old girl suffered life-threatening injuries and is in critical condition in the intensive care unit at UM Prince George's Hospital Center.
"We recently had a protest about school violence last week, and now this has happened", said Kameron Norwood, 16, as he and other students waited for relatives to pick them up from a nearby high school.
Parkland students and Great Mills students exchanged supportive messages on Twitter following Tuesday's shooting. This weekend, students across the country plan an anti-gun violence march on the nation's capital. When we asked her what that was like, she said, "Panic".
"The First Lady and I are praying for those who were injured, their families and loved ones, and for the entire Great Mills community as they come together to heal in the wake of this horrific situation".
Deputy Blaine Gaskill, the SRO, had SWAT training and been assigned to Great Mills since the beginning of the school year, Baltimore Sun reported.
Authorities didn't release a motive, but said they believe the girl and the shooter - 17-year-old Austin Rollins - previously had a relationship.
"He's doing well and we're going to do everything to support and promote him and his well-being", Cameron said.
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The public school's roughly 1600 students were later escorted off campus by police, classroom by classroom, to reunite with their parents at another high school. Sheriff Cameron said it is unclear if the shooter took his own life or was fatally shot by the deputy.
Officials have cleared the scene and moved students to another high school in the area while an investigation takes place. Sirens can also be heard in the background.
Following the shooting in Great Mills, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the USA capital Washington, students were evacuated to a nearby school where they were reunited with their parents, Cameron said.
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 almost an hour, but he did not hear gunshots himself. But Gaskill was immediately embraced as a hero by many who have called for more armed protectors in schools. These are children, as Dr. Smith (St. Mary's County Schools Superintendent) said. Investigators say Rollings fired his semi-automatic handgun at the same time.
"This is a tough guy who apparently closed in very quickly and took the right kind of action", Hogan said of Gaskill.
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