‘Between 8 to 10 Fatalities’ At Texas High School; Suspect Is In Custody

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Police were called to Santa Fe High School after shots were reportedly fired on Friday morning. Google Maps/Screenshot by NPR hide caption

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Google Maps/Screenshot by NPR

Police were called to Santa Fe High School after shots were reportedly fired on Friday morning.

Google Maps/Screenshot by NPR

Updated at 11:35 a.m. ET

“There are multiple fatalities that have been confirmed,” Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said, of a shooting at Santa Fe High School near Houston on Friday morning.

The sheriff added, “The number varies, but it could be anywhere between 8 to 10 fatalities at the school, including students and some adult staff as well.”

A suspect is in custody, and “a second one detained” for questioning, Gonzalez said earlier. The suspect is described as a current student at the school.

The school was put on lockdown after reports of the shooting emerged this morning. Several witnesses have said the attacker was armed with a shotgun.

Gonzalez added that one officer of the Santa Fe ISD Police Department was injured and is being treated at the hospital. He did not have details about that officer’s condition.

The shooting in Santa Fe, Texas, reportedly began before 8 a.m. local time. Several ambulances and Life Flight medevac helicopters were called to the school.

The University of Texas Medical Branch said that from the school shooting, it has received “3 patients, 2 adult, 1 under 18 years old.”

After initially announcing news of the shooting, the Santa Fe Independent School District issued an update stating:

“This morning an incident occurred at the high school involving an active shooter. The situation is active, but has been contained. There have been confirmed injuries. Details will be released as we receive updated information. Law enforcement will continue to secure the building and initiate all emergency management protocols to release and move students to another location. All other campuses are operating under their regular schedules.”

Citing a parent who was at the school, local TV station ABC 13 reported that a number of ambulances left the school carrying wounded people.

A student at the school told the station that she had been sitting in art class when someone entered with a gun and began firing. The student said that she fled and that she saw a student who had been wounded in the leg.

Another student, named Paige, told the station that she was in a classroom a few doors down from where the shooting started.

“I heard really loud booms, and I didn’t know what they were at first,” she said, saying she realized what the sounds were after she heard students screaming.

Paige said she and others took shelter in an area behind a stage after being told to wait before trying to leave immediately. The student said that she and others had trouble staying calm but that there was not a moment when she felt like what was happening wasn’t real.

“It’s been happening everywhere,” Paige said. “I always felt like eventually it would happen here. I wasn’t surprised, I was just scared.”

The same school was the site of a false alarm about a shooting back in February. In that case, students and teachers reported hearing “popping sounds” outside, as Houston Public Media reported.

Santa Fe is a town southeast of Houston, between that city and Galveston on the Gulf Coast.

Officers from the Galveston County Sheriff’s Office and the nearby Harris County Sheriff’s Office responded to the scene; as did agents from the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

As they exited the school, students left behind their backpacks to be checked by police and then filed onto a nearby grassy area alongside row of school buses. Images from the scene showed some students being searched by officers.

This is a breaking news story. As often happens in situations like these, some information reported early may turn out to be inaccurate. We’ll move quickly to correct the record, and we’ll only point to the best information we have at the time.

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