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One dead, eight injured in shooting at Colorado school

By
Daniel Uria

May 7 (UPI) -- At least one person died and eight more sustained injuries in a shooting at a school in Colorado on Tuesday, police said.

Douglas County Sheriff Tony Spurlock said all of the victims were students aged 15 years old and older. The sheriff's office said the person who died was an 18-year-old student.

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Other victims were in critical condition and had undergone surgery, while others were in stable condition at local hospitals.

The sheriff's office responded to a call of shots fired at 1:53 p.m. at the STEM School in the city of Highlands Ranch, 12 miles south of Denver, and Spurlock said authorities arrived at the scene two minutes later.

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Spurlock said the suspects included an adult male and a juvenile male. Both were believed to be students at the school and Spurlock said there were no other suspects.

The sheriff's office identified the adult suspect as 18-year-old Devon Erickson on Wednesday night but said it would not immediately release his photo.

"It could jeopardize this critical ongoing investigation," the sheriff's office said. "We still have interviews to conduct and we want to make sure we have the most accurate information."

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Authorities engaged in a struggle while arresting the suspects, but neither were injured. Spurlock said a handgun was used in the shooting but didn't immediately identify any other weapons that were used.

The FBI, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Department of Homeland Security assisted in the investigation, and authorities worked to secure permits to search a vehicle belonging to one victim and their homes.

The school has about 1,800 students ranging from kindergarten to 12th grade and Spurlock said the shootings took place at two separate locations within the school.

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No school resource officer was assigned to the school, but the school has its own private security and other officers in the area were able to respond to the scene.

Parents were urged to stay away from the school and instead go to a nearby recreation center to pick up their children.

The STEM School was placed on lockdown and some students were still being evacuated. All other Highlands Ranch schools were placed on lockout, the school districts said.

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The White House issued a statement offering condolences to the victims of the shooting and their families.

"Our prayers are with the victims, family members and all those affected by today's shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch in Littleton, Colorado. Tragically, this community and those surrounding it know all too well these hateful and horrible acts of violence. The White House has been in communication with state and local officials and the president has been briefed and continues to monitor the ongoing situation. We offer our full support to local law enforcement and first responders and thank them for their heroism," the statement read.

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