Two gunmen opened fire at a suburban Denver STEM school on Tuesday, killing one student and injuring eight others. The incident happened less than 10 miles from Columbine High School, which recently mourned the anniversary of its school shooting 20 years ago.
Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock said in a news conference that two suspects — 18-year-old Devon Erickson and an unidentified female juvenile — have been apprehended in the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch, which includes grades K-12. Both suspects are believed to be students at the school. The second suspect was initially identified by authorities as a juvenile male.
Spurlock confirmed that eight students, all of whom are at least 15, are being treated at area hospitals, and several are in critical condition. One student, an 18-year-old male named Kendrick Castillo, was killed at the school; the student’s father confirmed his son’s identity to NBC News. Neither suspect was injured.
As an investigation is underway, people are reeling from the tragedy that Spurlock called “a terrible event” and “something that nobody wants to happen in their community.”
Fred Guttenberg, who became an activist against gun violence after his 14-year-old daughter, Jaime, was killed in the 2018 Parkland school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, was “upset and angry” at the “preventable” shooting.
This gets me so upset and angry. This is preventable. We should not live in a country that depends on heroes, armed guards, and luck. We must deal with reality that our gun laws are weak and incidents like this are inevitable. This is a true emergency.https://t.co/Go6nKBZfeX
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) May 7, 2019
Guttenberg went on to call the shooting “the new normal” and spoke out against a political climate that allows students and adults to “live in fear of gun violence.” He warned, “we must not become desensitized to these shootings.”
America today, where we once came to enjoy freedom, safety, and a secure democracy. Now, we have children and adults who live in fear of gun violence every day because people they know and love are getting shot. THIS IS NOT NORMAL!!! https://t.co/wikDSscdO8
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) May 8, 2019
Guttenberg spoke out in February, on the one-year anniversary of the Parkland school shooting, which his son, Jesse, also a Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student, survived. “I am forever haunted by my memory of that morning, rushing my kids out the door rather than getting one last minute,” he tweeted. “Did I say I love you?”
Exactly one year ago, to the minute at around 7am, I sent two kids to school. Only my son Jesse came home. Jaime was murdered in school. I am forever haunted by my memory of that morning, rushing my kids out the door rather than getting one last minute. Did I say I love you? pic.twitter.com/s2IQHvDIcU
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) February 14, 2019
The next day, Guttenberg slammed President Trump for declaring a national emergency over the border wall on the day after the first anniversary of the tragedy “while ignoring [the] reality of gun violence.”
On the day I buried Jaime, our President blamed her murder on Russia. On day we dealt with the reality that it is now one year, our President again interfered declaring a fake emergency while ignoring reality of gun violence. Any questions as to why I think he does not care?
— Fred Guttenberg (@fred_guttenberg) February 15, 2019
Seventeen people were killed in the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. last year, and at least a dozen others were injured. The suspect, Nikolas Cruz, was charged with 17 counts of first-degree murder, according to the Naples Daily News, and could face the death penalty if convicted.
Read more from Yahoo Lifestyle:
- UNC Charlotte shooting survivor plans to walk across the stage in upcoming graduation
- School resource officer’s gun accidentally fired during Florida middle school’s lunch period
- Girl, 7, writes heartbreaking note to parents on arm during school lockdown ‘in case the bad guy got to us’