Richmond school shooting: No classes Friday or Monday at Dennis Intermediate

The 14-year-old boy who died in a confrontation with police Thursday morning at Dennis Intermediate School in Richmond, Indiana, lived in the city.

Here’s what we know:

  • Police tipped about “potential violent act” at Dennis Intermediate School 
  • The teen fired at a door to get inside, then exchanged gunfire with police
  • The teen died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound
  • Dennis Intermediate School is closed to students Friday, Monday

>> Richmond school shooting: What we know now

UPDATE @ 5:50 p.m.: “Dennis Intermediate School will not be open for students Friday, Dec. 14, and Monday, Dec. 17. All other Richmond Community Schools will be open,” schools officials posted on the district Facebook page. 

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“The event today at Dennis Intermediate School was an isolated incident. We will have extra law enforcement presence at all building. If you plan to keep your children home tomorrow, we understand,” the social media post reads.

UPDATE @ 3:35 p.m.:

Authorities searched a home on SW 16th Street they believe is the residence of the boy killed in the school shooting, according to media reports. Indiana State Police would not confirm those media reports.

INITIAL REPORT

The 14-year-old male suspect, whose identity has not been released, died of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound and no other students were harmed, authorities said during a press conference this afternoon.

“Today is a tragic day in Richmond,” said Richmond Mayor David Snow.

Authorities are crediting a phoned-in tip that alerted officers to the potential threat and being able to respond in time to prevent a mass school shooting.

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The teen suspect arrived at the school with a gun and was confronted by officers from Richmond, the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office and the Indiana State Police.

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The school already was locked down because authorities received a tip that the teen was planning to go to the school and open fire.

When the suspect attempted to enter the school building and found the door locked, he shot out the window to the door and gained entry, authorities said.

Officers pursued the suspect into the school building and cornered him in a stairwell. Gunfire was exchanged and the suspect died from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, authorities said.

Authorities detailed the morning’s events during a press conference early this afternoon.

Many questions remain, including what kind and how many firearms the suspect had in his possession, what his motives were and whether he was a student in the district.

Indiana school shooting busses leaving

“How thankful I am that all of our students are safe; all of our staff members are safe,” said Richmond Community Schools Superintendent Todd Terrill.

>> Indiana governor issues statement on school shooting

Reports of an active shooter at Dennis Intermediate became public shortly after classes started this morning. Dennis and Richmond Community Schools’ 15 other buildings were put on lockdown.

 

The district communicated with the school community on Facebook, posting at 8:38 a.m. that all buildings were locked down and no one was allowed to enter or leave the school buildings.

>> Social media reacts to Richmond school shooting

The next post came 24 minutes later, stating: “There has been an active shooter situation at Dennis Intermediate School” and the building is secure.

Again 32 minutes later, the district posted that students were safe and only the suspect was injured.

Indiana school shooting busses leaving

Dennis students were transported to Richmond High School and parents were directed to pick up their children at the nearby Civic Hall Performing Arts Center, which is on the high school’s campus on Hub Etchison Parkway.

 

Dennis Intermediate School is located about five minutes northwest of the high school.

Afternoon preschool classes were canceled.

Other Richmond schools will follow a regular day schedule and will dismiss at at normal times.

>> Active shooter training saved lives, Indiana police say

Dennis Intermediate School is one of three intermediate schools in the Richmond Community Schools district in Wayne County, Ind.

Dennis Intermediate, at 222 NW Seventh St. in Richmond, educates students in fifth through eighth grades.

There are 1,393 students in those grades in Richmond Community Schools, according to the district’s 2017-18 annual report.

Total enrollment in the district is 4,879, and 78 percent of those students are eligible for free or reduced lunches, according to the report.

The racial makeup of the student body is 66 percent white, 9.8 percent Hispanic, 9.2 percent black and 13.6 percent multiracial, according to the report.

The district’s graduation rate has been steadily rising from 60 percent in 2007 to 96.4 percent in 2017, according to the report.

According to the school’s website, the Dennis Intermediate School building opens at 7:45 a.m. and classes begin after breakfast at 8:15 a.m.

The winter choir concert for students in sixth through eighth grades was scheduled for tonight at the school’s auditorium.

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