Three students were killed and six were injured in an Oxford High School shooting in Oxford, Michigan on Tuesday. The suspect, a 15-year-old sophomore, has been taken into custody. The suspect has reportedly retained the right to remain silent and asked for a lawyer. A motive for the tragic shooting is still unclear.
According to reports, Oxford police received over 100 911 calls about shots fired at the high school, at around 12:51 p.m. Officers arrived on the scene and they were able to detain the suspect within five minutes. A handgun was recovered from the suspect and police believe that he acted alone.
More than 60 ambulances and medical helicopters arrived on the scene. The victims were taken to hospitals to be treated for their various injuries. The conditions of the six injured victims are unclear and all names have been kept confidential. It is believed that the three people killed were students.
The Oxford Community Schools issued a statement following the shooting and said, “Oxford High School students and staff are systematically being evacuated to the Meijer Garden Center and may be picked up there. Any students with their own transportation have been allowed to leave. All other district schools are in lockdown for safety purposes and are in no danger.”
After the school’s lockdown was lifted, students were able to gather in the Meijer’s parking lot behind the school. A student named Savannah, who spoke to FOX 2, said that the high school regularly practiced school shooting drills and that the students knew what to do.
Parents were allowed to meet their children at the grocery store parking lot to pick them up and students who had personal transportation were able to leave following the lockdown. School officials told parents to stay away from the school in an active alert that was sent out around 2 p.m.
One parent, who was waiting in his car for his son, told reporters that his child had to barricade the door of his classroom and hide from the shooter. Reports said that many students were actively texting their parents from inside the school.
A supposed student of Oxford High School, Tyler Majewski, took to social media after the shooting and blamed the administration for the Oxford High School shooting. According to him, a student had been making threats against his peers and those threats were ignored by administration.
Majewski said, “Oxford High school higher up administration are a joke as they ignored complaints from parents who were worried for their children’s safety. Parents made complaints about a student who discussed bringing threats toward students at the school and while they were told that it would be handled, nothing was dealt with. Praying for everyone involved.”
It is unclear how true Majewski’s claims are.
Police continue to do a secondary search of the Oxford High School. According to Oakland County Undersheriff Michael McCabe, officers are looking for other potential victims and students who might be still hiding within the school.
The Oakland County Police Department said that they will have another press conference at 5 p.m. to potentially give ages and conditions of the victims.
Teachers have reported an increase in violent behavior across the country and many are scared for their safety. Elementary school students were caught vandalizing classrooms in Vermont, a stabbing led to seven student arrests in a school in Annapolis, Md. and fathers at a school in Louisiana have started to befriend students during learning hours after 23 arrests were reported in a week.
Many are blaming a recent increase in school violence and shootings on the Covid-19 pandemic. James A. Densley, a professor for Criminal Justice at Metropolitain State University in Minnesota, said he believes the increase in violence is a reflection of the civil unrest in our country.
He said, “It’s a combination of the pandemic; a lack of trust in our institutions, particularly law enforcement; the presence of guns; the toxic, divisive, contentious times we live in. They’re all interacting together.”
Until national statistics on school shootings and student violence are completely gathered and studied, it is unclear if 2021 numbers will surpass previous school years.