Honors Student Attempted Suicide with Semiautomatic Handgun in School

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Students, some in tears, gathered in the school gym after the shooting. The school’s website said all students were safe, and were being released to parents “due to an attempted suicide involving one student.” Grief counselors from the Roman Catholic archdiocese joined the school’s counselors in meeting with students and staff, and Monday evening school activities were canceled.

School officials said classes would resume Tuesday, with the school day beginning in a prayer service.

“We just ask that you pray for him and his family,” said Greg Tankersley, La Salle’s director of community development. “It’s a tragic situation for this young man.”

He said the youth was “fighting for his life.”

A priest went to the hospital where the student was taken. Tankersley said the boy’s parents asked that his name not be released, and said he wouldn’t release other information about the student other than to say he had a strong academic and community service record.

In the aftermath of last year’s fatal shootings of three students in Chardon High School in northeast Ohio and December’s Sandy Hook Elementary shooting rampage in Connecticut, most schools have taken steps to increase security. In Ohio, that’s included taking shooting prevention and response training courses offered by the state attorney general and updating safety procedures with police.

“We always have concerns about school security,” West said, but he added that La Salle “did an excellent job” in responding Monday. He said township police had met recently with school officials to review their safety plan.

“We’re going to go back and look at everything,” Tankersley replied when asked at a news conference about a gun getting into the school. But he added that Monday’s top priority was the condition of the wounded student and the well-being of the others.

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