December 14, 2018

Shooting At Richmond Schools, Teenage Shooter Dead

Article origination IPBS-RJC
Shooting At Richmond Schools, Teenage Shooter Dead

Lauren Chapman and Jeanie Lindsay

Indiana State Police say the mother of the shooter at a Richmond middle school called in a tip to police – preventing others from being hurt.

The district posted on social media all schools were locked down because of an "active shooter situation" at Dennis Intermediate School. 

Indiana State Police say the 14-year-old suspect is dead, and no other students were injured. 



Indiana State Police Sgt. John Bowling says someone called in to Richmond Police dispatch before 8 a.m. Thursday.

"The local police, Richmond and the Wayne County Sheriff's Department, received information this morning that a person was possibly en route to Dennis Intermediate School here in Richmond, on the west side of Richmond, to possibly commit a violent act," Bowling says.

Police identified the caller as the 14-year-old's mother on Friday.

Police say the school district was immediately placed on lockdown. Officers confronted the teenage suspect, who then shot out the glass of a locked entry door to the school and ran inside. He and police exchanged gunfire as officers pursued him in the building.

Police say the 14-year-old died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound. No officers were injured, and it has not been determined if the suspect was wounded by police.

Bowling says the mother's early morning tip likely prevented anyone else inside the school from getting hurt.

"Mainly because someone knew something, and they said something. They warned police and police were able to respond. The school was able to follow procedures to help protect students,” Bowling says.

ISP Superintendent Doug Carter says there is no simple answer to why this shooting happened. 

“I don’t understand now, I didn’t understand before, and I’m not sure when we’re going to understand why this continues to happen – this is the second time in Indiana,” Carter says. 

Richmond Mayor Dave Snow says local police were supposed to give away toys to local children.

"Instead, this morning our officers were involved in an active shooting with a child of our community," Snow says. "Any incident involving the loss of life is terrible. It's exponentially compounded when it adds undue stress and anxiety to our children."

Richmond Community Schools announced Dennis Intermediate School would be closed on Friday and Monday. All other schools will operate as usual, and the district says it will have an increased police presence at schools.

Earlier this year, a 13-year-old opened fire in a Noblesville school injuring a classmate and teacher. The situation sparked additional funding and school safety measures at the statehouse. Lawmakers have said it’s a top priority heading into the 2019 legislative session.

This story has been updated.

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