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Student opens fire at Calif. high school

Jan. 10, 2013 at 7:33 PM   |   Comments

BAKERSFIELD, Calif., Jan. 10 (UPI) -- A student shot and critically wounded another student at a Southern California high school but was stopped by a teacher before he could hurt more, police said.

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said the 16-year-old shooter, armed with a 12-gauge shotgun, hit one of two students he had targeted, the Bakersfield Californian reported.

One student was critically injured and airlifted to Kern Medical Center, where he was listed in critical but stable condition. A second student was injured when he fell over a table, and a teacher, identified as Ryan Heber, suffered a pellet wound to the head.

The incident began about 9 a.m. PST Thursday at Taft Union High School when a student who had been marked absent showed up in a classroom and opened fire. A neighbor saw the student approaching the school with a gun and called 911, Youngblood said.

Youngblood said the student in critical condition was the intended target of the shooting, and he and the shooter had had words before the shooting.

Youngblood said, however, he did not know whether bullying was involved, the newspaper reported.

"We really want to commend a teacher and campus supervisor who brought this to a fast resolution," police Chief Ed Whiting said.

He said the teacher and supervisor talked to the student and convinced him to put the gun down before police arrived.

Heber's family said he was the teacher who talked the gunman into surrendering his weapon, the Californian reported. The supervisor was not identified.

Youngblood said at one point the shooter told the teacher he didn't want to shoot him.

Youngblood said an armed officer is assigned to the school but was not present Thursday because he had been snowed in.

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