At least 17 people are dead and many more injured after a shooter opened fire at a Florida high school, according to Broward County Pubilc Schools Superintendent Robert W. Runcie.
The shooting took place at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, on Wednesday, February 14. Broward County Sheriff’s Office tweeted on Wednesday afternoon that the shooter is in custody and the victims are being transported to hospitals.
Authorities say that the 19-year-old gunman was a former student who was expelled for disciplinary reasons. According to police, he had one rifle and multiple magazines and shot victims both inside the school building and outside.
Florida Senator Bill Nelson has since spoken out about the tragedy, telling CNN, “It’s a bad day for Florida and for the country.”
Coral Springs police tweeted a message to students and teachers at the institution, telling them to “remain barricaded inside” until authorities were able to reach them. They also announced that the school perimeter has been locked down.
An unidentified student told WSVN that the school had a fire drill earlier in the day, so when the shooting occurred, people believed it was a follow-up procedure.
“We already had a drill today so we thought it was just another drill,” the student explained. “We heard a pop and then from the other side of the school, we saw the whole school running out.”
Parkland is a small Fort Lauderdale suburb with approximately 30,000 people. The Broward County Public Schools website reports that 3,208 students are enrolled at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
The FBI announced in a tweet that they have responded to the scene.
President Donald Trump has also tweeted about the tragedy. “My prayers and condolences to the families of the victims of the terrible Florida shooting,” he wrote. “No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school.”
He added in a follow-up post: “Just spoke to Governor Rick Scott. We are working closely with law enforcement on the terrible Florida school shooting.”
Keeping checking back here for updates on the story.
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