At least two people were killed and three others injured Thursday morning in a shooting at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, officials said. One female student and a 14-year-old male student died at the hospital while they were being treated for their wounds. Another 14-year-old boy, and two girls, 14 and 15, were injured in addition to the gunman.
The shooting was reported around 7:40 a.m. local time, prompting a massive response from police and firefighters to the school. According to sheriff's officials, the alleged shooter brought the gun to school concealed in his backpack. When the student arrived at school, the suspect reportedly took out a .45 semi-auto weapon and began firing on students in the quad, saving the last bullet for himself. He was taken into custody and is currently being treated at a local hospital. The suspect is currently in "grave" condition.
It was the suspect's 16th birthday today (Thursday, Nov. 14), authorities said.
Authorities identified the suspect as a 16-year-old student, adding that he was no longer a threat. The suspect reportedly shot himself, and is currently in grave condition at a local hospital, L.A. County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said at a press conference Thursday. He's described as an Asian male dressed in all black clothing. Initial reports said the suspect had fled the school's campus into the nearby hills, but after authorities searched the hills and reviewed surveillance video, they realized he was one of the students who had been transported to the hospital.
An off-duty sheriff's deputy was one of the first people on scene when the shooting occurred, Villanueva said. He had been dropping off a family member at the school when he saw the children fleeing the gunfire. Two other officers who were dropping off their kids at school and resident in the immediate area also responded immediately. Trauma kits at the school were used to treat the victims on-scene.
A .45 caliber handgun was recovered at the scene. A search warrant has been issued for what officials believe is the suspect's residence for any further evidence or leads for the shooting.
The FBI says they have no reason to believe the suspect was acting on any specific ideology or group, but cautioned that this was the first day of the investigation and circumstances could change.
Undersheriff Tim Murakami says there are rumors that the Saugus High shooter may have posted threats on social media and that those will be investigated.
"Saugus, have fun at school tomorrow." was written on what is believed to be the suspect's Instagram bio, authorities said. The account's bio was changed by someone else who had access to the account before it was taken down by Instagram. They did not say who may have access to the account.
"If you ever learn of posted threats, please notify us ASAP," Murakami said. "It will result in an immediate investigation. We have successfully prevented possible acts of violence as a result of such reports.''
The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department said earlier that the suspect was an Asian male wearing black clothing. Police were able to identify the suspect based on witnesses descriptions and surveillance video from the scene.
All schools in William S Hart District were briefly placed on lockdown as a precaution due to the active shooter situation at the high school. That lockdown was lifted at around 9:15 a.m. Authorities are asking people to avoid the area, which is located about 40 miles north of the city of Los Angeles.
A third male victim was listed in good condition. A seventh person was injured, but that was not a shooting injury.
A family reunification center was established at Central Park on Bouquet Canyon Road. A second site was set up at Bouquet Canyon Church.
A FBI spokesperson says there are no other threats known to the school.
A White House spokesperson says President Donald Trump is monitoring the situation.
The Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff's Department tweeted a warning to residents in the area before the suspect was located about the active shooter situation, asking them to keep an eye out for the suspect.
"If you live in neighborhoods anywhere near Saugus High, PLEASE LOCK DOORS and stay inside. If you see suspect, male dark clothing, in backyards, etc. CALL 911," the sheriff's department tweeted.
This is a breaking news story. More details will be added as they become available.
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