High schools in North Carolina and Kentucky were placed on lockdowns after two separate shooting incidents that left one student injured at each school.
Police and SWAT teams flooded into Fern Creek High School in Louisville, Kentucky after reports of shots fired Tuesday afternoon. At least one student was injured and taken to the hospital, and the parents have been notified, police said.
The injuries are not life-threatening, and the student has been transported to nearby University Hospital, a Louisville Metro Police Department spokesperson reported. Another student told his mother that he saw a single gunman aim and shoot the victim in the stomach, according WLKY.
“The shooter most likely fled scene immediately after,” LMPD Sgt. Bill Russell told reporters. Police are still searching the building. “It will take time to secure building and ensure everyone is safe,” he added.
“The parents and the victim have been united in the hospital,” Jefferson County Public Schools spokesman Ben Jackey told reporters. “If you have not heard from JCPS, it is safe to assume that your child is okay.”
Students are being evacuated from the school class-by-class, with their hands above their heads, until they arrive at the baseball stadium behind the building or at Fern Creek Park, about a half mile away.
“It is senseless, it is unacceptable and it cannot happen in our schools,” Jackey said.
The American Red Cross has arrived with one of its emergency relief vehicles, WLKY’s helicopter pilot reported.
Shortly after staff became aware there was a gunman on the premises around 1 p.m. local time, the school went on a Level 5 lockdown, with students and teachers sheltering in place until they were evacuated by police, Jackey said.
There are 1,400 students enrolled at FCHS, and Fern Creek Elementary School, located next door to the high school, is also on lockdown. The schools are about 10 miles south of downtown Louisville.
The school and police are asking parents to meet their students at Fern Creek Park. “Parents must bring an ID to identify themselves as the guardian of the student,” Jackey said. If a parent arrives without identification, “we will figure something out.”
Students are texting their parents, and some are still in classes because they believe the gunman is still on the loose, WLKY’s Anne Bowdan reported.
Tuesday morning, an argument between two male students outside Albemarle High School in Albemarle, North Carolina ended with one of them shooting the other before classes began, police said. The suspected shooter ‒ who was not identified ‒ surrendered to police, Police Chief William Halliburton said. The town is about 40 miles northeast of Charlotte.