Cheer Up! Knoxville Didn't Have Deadly School Shooting, Just A Deadly Shootout *At School*
A high school student in Knoxville, Tennessee, barricaded himself inside a restroom yesterday, then when police entered the restroom, open fired on the cops seriously wounding one. The police shot back, killing the student, whose identity and age haven't been released yet.
The shooting took place around 3:15 p.m. at Austin-East Magnet High School, a performing arts magnet school, after police got a call about someone with a gun hiding in a restroom. The Washington Post reports that the police
ordered the student out, but he refused to comply. As the officers entered the restroom, officials said, the student reportedly fired shots and struck an officer.
One officer returned fire, authorities said. The student was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.
The Knoxville News Sentinel reports that a "source with direct knowledge of the incident who was not authorized to speak" said the injured cop is the school's resource officer. Because the shooting involved police, the investigation is being done by the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation.
As of yet, we haven't seen any mention of the police trying to de-escalate the situation by waiting the kid out or trying to persuade him to give up, but who knows, maybe that happened at some point before they went into the bathroom? We also have not yet seen any reporting on where the student got the gun. Also, we should note that early reports of "multiple gunshot victims" turned out to be incorrect.
The director of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, David Rausch, offered sympathies for the family of the slain student, but also made this distinction, which he seemed to think was awfully important.
"This wasn't a school shooting. This was an officer-involved shooting inside of a school," Rausch told reporters. He said the two things were "much different."
We're really glad that it wasn't a full on mass shooting, sure, but it was very definitely a kid with a gun, in a school, where there was shooting, so please forgive us if we don't feel a hell of a lot better about things.
The school went into lockdown, and students were eventually allowed out the back of the school to reunite with their parents at the school's baseball field. Austin-East will be closed today and tomorrow.
Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee (R) asked Tennesseans to pray for the families of those affected in the shooting, so God ought to make sure everything is fine now. WaPo points out that Lee extremely recently — as in last week — signed legislation that allows adults in the state to carry handguns without a permit, and that he explained on Twitter that "I signed constitutional carry today because it shouldn't be hard for law-abiding Tennesseans to exercise their #2A rights."
Guns are excellent and patriotic, and should be easy for law-abiding adults to get their hands on, and if you wish at this moment to make a very dark joke about teens with guns exclaiming "I learned it from you!" at all the adults with guns, we will certainly be sympathetic.
The News Sentinel notes that Monday's shooting is the fifth time a teen in the Knoxville area has died from gunfire this year, although it's probably very important to the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation that we point out the other deaths weren't in schools, so let's not get hysterical or anything.
On January 27, a 15-year-old boy was killed when a 17-year-old unintentionally shot him in a car they were in. The older boy has been charged with negligent homicide. Then, on February 12, a 16-year-old boy was shot and killed while driving home from school. Two other teen boys, aged 14 and 16, have been charged in that shooting.
A15-year-old girl was found shot dead outside her home on February 16, and on March 9 a woman found a 15-year-old boy shot and wounded near the University of Tennessee Medical Center. She got him to the hospital, but he died the next day. There are no suspects yet in the latter two killings, but police have said there's no evidence suggesting they were related.
Perhaps if we just had more and more guns everywhere — for self-defense, and to prevent tyranny of course — then no one would shoot anyone ever again. That seems the most likely outcome, according to people who think we need more and more guns everywhere to keep us safe.
Yr Wonkette is funded entirely by reader donations. If you can, please give $5 or $10 monthly, and we'll keep you up to date on all the safety once it arrives.
Doktor Zoom's real name is Marty Kelley, and he lives in the wilds of Boise, Idaho. He is not a medical doctor, but does have a real PhD in Rhetoric. You should definitely donate some money to this little mommyblog where he has finally found acceptance and cat pictures. He is on maternity leave until 2033. Here is his Twitter, also. His quest to avoid prolixity is not going so great.