Former student kills 6 Nashville school students
A former student who entered a Christian elementary school armed with AR-style weapons and detailed maps and opened fire, killing three children and three adult in the deadliest US school shooting in nearly a year.
The shooter, identified as 28-year-old Audrey Hale, was shot dead by police during the Monday morning attack, leaving behind “drawn out” maps of the Covenant School, Metro Nashville Police Chief, John Drake, said.
In a social media message apparently sent by the shooter minutes before the attack, Hale stated a plan to die by suicide and wrote “something bad is about to happen,” the messages to a childhood teammate shared with CNN affiliate said. The former teammate “tried to comfort and encourage” Hale, then called authorities, the recipient told WTVF.
As police work to piece together what led to the violence, officials have determined where the shooter lived in the Nashville area and have interviewed Hale’s father, they said.
Investigators are expected to spend Tuesday processing the scene and gathering more details about what happened during the roughly 14 minutes of terror at the private elementary school run as a ministry of Covenant Presbyterian Church.
The attack was the 19th shooting at an American school or university in 2023, in which at least one person was wounded, according to a CNN tally, and the deadliest. Some 562 such shootings have happened since 2008.
As the Nashville shooting developed, worried parents rushed to the school, and frightened students and teachers were forced to take cover as gunshots exploded and police confronted the attacker, adding the grieving campus community to a long list of other US schools stunned by gun violence.
All three students killed were 9 years old. Police identified them as Evelyn Dieckhaus, William Kinney and Hallie Scruggs. Also killed were Cynthia Peak, 61; Katherine Koonce, 60; and Mike Hill, 61, police said. —CNN