'Worst Day of My ... Career': Washington Trooper Responds to Fatal Shooting at His Children's High School
A state trooper had the 'worst day' of his career when he responded to a school shooting at his children's high school Wednesday
A Washington State Patrol trooper responded to a 911 call Wednesday reporting an active shooter at the high school his children attend.
Trooper Jeff Sevigney tweeted about the shooting, writing, “Worst day of my LE [law enforcement] career. To respond to your own kids school for active shooter. Prayers for everyone involved. #FreemanHS.”
The shooting occurred as classes were commencing Wednesday morning, killing one student and seriously injuring three others, according to a Facebook post by the Freeman School District.
Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich told NBC News the death toll would have been high had the suspect’s first weapon not jammed.
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“This would have been a lot worse if it didn’t,” he said. “That student came to school armed. He entered the school. He proceeded to take his weapons out. At that point he attempted to fire one weapon, it jammed. He went to his next weapon.”
The fatal victim has been identified by his family as Sam Strahan, a sophomore. In the family’s GoFundMe page, they say that he was killed “when he tried to intervene to stop the shooter,” an account also reported by The Spokesman-Review. KREM reported the suspect and the victim were “best friends.”
“That student was shot, and that student did not survive,” Knezovich said in a news conference.
The injured students were transported to Providence Sacred Heart Medical Center and are in stable condition.
A junior at Freeman High School tweeted a photo of several students sitting on the floor near their desks, writing that they heard “at least four shots.”
NBC News reported a school custodian approached the suspect and ordered him to stop shooting — a deputy later took the suspect into custody.
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Knezovich told the outlet the suspect’s motive seemed to stem from “a bullying type of situation.”
“These are senseless and tragic events that really don’t need to happen and I don’t understand them,” he said. “I don’t think anybody can make sense out of this but we need to figure out what’s gone wrong with our society that our children decide that they need to take weapons to deal with the issues that they’re facing.”
The suspect is currently in a juvenile detention center and has not been charged, according to NBC News.
The Freeman School District superintendent said in the Facebook post that there would be no school on Thursday and that counseling services would be available for students and staff.