7th grader shoots self at Ohio middle school

By Ray Downs  |  Updated Feb. 21, 2018 at 2:30 PM
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Feb. 21 (UPI) -- A 7th grade student in Ohio is in critical condition after shooting himself in his school's bathroom, police said Tuesday.

The incident occurred around 7:50 a.m. Tuesday at Jackson Memorial Middle School in Jackson Township, located north of Canton. Jackson Township Police Chief Mark Brink said the student, whose name has not been released, was armed with a .22-caliber long rifle, Cleveland.com reported.

Officials said they are trying to determine if the shooting was intentional.

"That is still being determined, but suicide with a long rifle is complicated and not too common," Stark County Sheriff George Maier told The Columbus Dispatch.

Emergency officials took the student to a nearby hospital for treatment.

The shooting set off a panic at the school as students, teachers and parents across the country reeled from the latest mass school shooting that killed 17 people in Parkland, Fla., last week.

"That Florida shooting just happened, and you keep thinking about your kid," Daniela Biller, a parent of three at the school, told the Dispatch. "I just bawled my eyes out watching the Florida shooting and thinking about what if it was my kids."

One student texted his mother as the school went into lockdown just after the shooting, according to WOIO-TV.

"I don't know if it's a drill. I love you just in case," the student wrote. "Uh, If I go tell everyone I love them."

Classes at the school were expected to resume Wednesday.

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