A community is in mourning today after at least one student was killed and eight other people injured in a shooting at a Colorado high school on Tuesday.
Police say two suspects are now in custody.
They are 18-year-old Devon Erickson and a juvenile accomplice.
The shooting took place Tuesday afternoon at a STEM school in Highlands Ranch, a Denver suburb. It’s only about 7 miles from Littleton, where the infamous Columbine High School mass murder took place in 1999.
“It is with extreme sadness that we can confirm that 1 student at the STEM School was killed in today’s #stemshooting incident,” the Douglas County Sheriff’s Office wrote in a Twitter message. “The immediate family has been notified.”
It is with extreme sadness that we can confirm that 1 student at the STEM School was killed in today’s #stemshooting incident. The immediate family has been notified. Douglas County Coroner Jill Romann has not officially identified the student is stating it’s an 18 year old male.
— DC Sheriff (@dcsheriff) May 8, 2019
An 18-year-old male was killed, although as of the time of this report, the coroner has not officially identified the student.
Police say they believe both Erickson and the juvenile suspect were students of the school, Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock stated at a news conference. He also added that neither suspect was previously known to authorities.
The suspects “walked into the STEM school, got deep inside the school and engaged students in two separate locations,” the official said. “There were a number of students that were shot and injured.”
Out of the eight students who were taken to nearby hospitals, several were listed in critical condition.
On Tuesday night, at least four others were released.
“No staff or officers” were injured, the sheriff’s office said.
#stemshooting Sheriff says suspects 1 adult male, 1 juv male in custody. No other suspects. 8 students injured, several critical, area hospitals. No staff or officers injured. Working with DA to get search warrants for suspect car at school and suspects' homes.
— DC Sheriff (@dcsheriff) May 7, 2019
Within minutes of being notified of the shooting, the first deputies responed to the school “and engaged the suspects,” the official said.
“As officers were arriving at the school, they could still hear gunshots,” Douglas County Undersheriff Holly Nicholson-Kluth said.
Police say there are no other suspects were being sought, and that authorities “have all the people that are involved.”
Earlier on Tuesday, Douglas County Undersheriff Holly Nicholson-Kluth had said a third suspect may have remained inside the school.
Now police are working on getting warrants to search both suspects’ homes, as well as a suspect vehicle, Spurlock said.
Just before 2 p.m. local time on Tuesday, the sheriff’s office tweeted that police responded to a “call of shots fired in school” and urged the public to avoid the area.
Unstable situation, shots fired at STEM school at Ridgeline and Plaza. Avoid area. Media go to north side of AMC
— DC Sheriff (@dcsheriff) May 7, 2019
A number of units from the South Metro Fire Rescue reported to the scene to help, the Denver office of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) also tweeted that its personnel were responding.
— South Metro Fire Rescue (@SouthMetroPIO) May 7, 2019
Colorado Gov. Jared Polis wrote on that his team was “monitoring the situation in real time” while offering condolences to those affected.
We are making all of our public safety resources available to assist the Douglas County Sheriff's Department in their effort to secure the site and evacuate the students. We are monitoring the situation in real time. The heart of all Colorado is with the victims & their families.
— Jared Polis (@GovofCO) May 7, 2019
The shooting happened just one week after two students were killed and four other people wounded at the University of North Carolina-Charlotte, and three weeks after Littleton marked the 20thanniversary of the Columbine school massacre that killed 13 people.
The STEM School Highlands Ranch is a public charter school. It has more than 1,850 students in kindergarten through 12th grades.
STEM refers to science, technology, engineering and mathematics, which are the core components of the school’s curriculum.