Two students were critically injured and a gunman died in a shooting at Great Mills High School in Southern Maryland Tuesday morning as classes began.
The gunman who was a student at the school 70 miles south of Washington, D.C. opened fire in a hallway shortly before classes began around 8 a.m., striking a female and male student, said Sheriff Timothy K. Cameron.
Students and staff quickly notified an armed school resource officer, who pursued the shooter and fired a single shot at him, Cameron said at a press conference around 11:30 a.m. The shooter fired back.
The shooter and the two students were rushed to local hospitals in critical condition. The shooter, who was not identified, was pronounced dead at 10:41 a.m., Cameron said.
Cameron said, “On this day, we realized our worst nightmare.Our children were attacked in a bastion of safety…The notion that it can’t happen here is no longer a notion.”
It was not immediately clear if the school resource officer’s round struck the shooter, Cameron said. The school resource officer was not injured, the sheriff said.
Cameron said there was “no question” the situation would have been worse if the SRO had not engaged the shooter.Cameron said they are still investigating a motive and it’s unclear whether the shooter knew the students who were shot.
Great Mills High, where the incident occurred, has about 1,600 students.
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) said Maryland State Police are “in touch with local law enforcement and ready to provide support.” He added: “Our prayers are with students, school personnel and first responders.”