LA school shooting an accident, say police

The scene near Sal Castro Middle School
The scene near Sal Castro Middle School
Author

04 February, 2018

Sgt. Edward Bernal of the Los Angeles School Police Department (LAPD) told KTLA television that the condition of the victims is now unknown.

Police guard a roadblock to Salvadore Castro Middle School in Los Angeles, California on February 1, 2018, where two students were wounded, one critically, in a school shooting.

This was at least the third school shooting in recent weeks in the United States.

After the campus was declared safe Thursday, the school day continued, and students could talk to counselors about the shooting, said Vivian Ekchian, interim superintendent of the Los Angeles Unified School District.

The suspected shooter was taken into custody and a firearm was recovered, officials said. The suspect was found with a weapon.

The shooting left a 15-year-old boy in critical but stable condition with a gunshot wound to the temple and a 15-year-old girl in fair condition after being shot in the arm, according to police and fire department reports. "I had the gun in my backpack and I didn't know it was loaded and my backpack fell and the gun went off", Jordan Valenzuela, 12, said of what the crying girl told him, according to The Associated Press. Two other students, ages 11 and 12, were grazed by bullets.

The kids said a student had been shot.

The shooting was reported at 8:53 a.m. local time and occurred in an elective class with mixed grades, officials said.

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"The physical evidence seems to support that it was discharged from within the backpack", LAPD Deputy Chief Robert Arcos said Friday morning. Apparently, this shooting was an accidental discharge of just one round from inside a backpack.

Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer said the incident should be a "call to action" for gun owners to ensure weapons are kept away from children while Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis said she was "horrified" by events.

On Friday morning, anxious parents accompanied their children to the school as classes resumed.

She texted that she was sitting next to two girls who were injured. "We want to take our children home", Gonzalez said.

Diego Salinas said when his sister texted him from the middle school, he immediately rushed over.

Guadalupe Segura placed her hand on her heart as she watched her 13-year-old daughter, Jazmine, walk into the Westlake middle school, along with dozens of other students.

We are fully cooperating with the Los Angeles Police Department in its investigation of this matter.


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