Reports: Two students killed, 19 wounded in Kentucky high school shooting
BENTON, Kentucky — At least two people are dead and 19 others wounded after a shooting at a high school in Marshall County, Kentucky.
According to authorities, 14 of those injured were shot. One female student died at the scene and a second boy died at the hospital.
The shooter, a 15-year-old student, entered Marshall County High School in Benton just before 8 a.m. Tuesday and began shooting. He was later arrested and will be charged with murder and first-degree murder.
According to NBC affiliate WPSD, students were bused to North Marshall Middle School, which is where parents can pick up their kids. Parents are being asked not to call the school.
At least four patients were airlifted to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville. The hospital has confirmed the four people were admitted to the facility.
FBI Louisville agents and personnel are at the scene to assist with the investigation.
Parent Misty Green’s daughter was inside the school during the shooting.
“My daughter was sitting there in the commons area and heard the ‘pop, pop, pop’ and initially got down and then just realized what was going on, so they took out running out of the building as fast as they could,” Green said.
Green said her daughter, Morgan, is traumatized after seeing and hearing the entire incident.
“Initially she didn’t know what it was, but then she realized it was a gun and all of the other students realized what it was, and they all just got out of the building as quickly as they could. And teachers were grabbing kids up and helping them get into safe places. And helping them get outside and get to a safe location,” Green said.
Kentucky state law prohibits having guns on school campuses.
Back in November, the Marshall County Sheriff’s Office hosted active shooter training for residents. The sheriff told WPSD at the time that they organized the event after the deadly church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas.
“We cannot take the attitude it will never happen here, because just like 20 years ago, it’s never gonna happen here, and look at what happened at Heath High School … it can happen here,” said Sheriff Kevin Byers back in November.
Back in 1997, three people were killed in a shooting at Heath High School in Paducah, which is about 30 minutes away from Benton. Five others were injured. The gunman was 14 years old.
Gov. Matt Bevin issued this statement about the shooting: “This is a tremendous tragedy and speaks to the heartbreak present in our communities. It is unbelievable that this would happen in a small, close-knit community like Marshall County. As there is still much unknown, I encourage people to love on each other at this time. Do not speculate, but come alongside each other in support and allow the facts to come out.”
Several other Kentucky politicians have been responding to the tragic news on social media.
The community is about three hours north of Memphis in the Land Between the Lakes area.