A 12-year-old boy was arrested on Tuesday morning in connection with a school shooting in New Mexico that injured two of his fellow students.
NBC News reported that the boy allegedly opened fire after walking into the gymnasium at Berrendo Middle School in Roswell, where students were gathered before the start of the school day to avoid the cold temperature outside. The victims, a 12-year-old boy and a 13-year-old girl, were flown to University Medical Center in Lubbock, Texas and hospitalized. The boy is listed in critical condition, while the girl was upgraded to serious condition Tuesday afternoon. Authorities have not identified the suspect.
One witness told the Albuquerque Journal that the suspect carried the firearm inside a band instrument case while he made his way to the gym.
“He shot up in the sky, then dropped the gun, and then some teacher grabbed the kid that had the gun,” the witness, eighth-grader Odiee Carranza, told the Journal.
KOB-TV reported that Gov. Susana Martinez (R) confirmed at a press conference that a staff member convinced the suspect to put his weapon down.
“I’m asking that all New Mexicans please put these children in your prayers,” Martinez was quoted as saying. “We have a 12-year-old and a 13-year-old who were shot by simply sitting in their gym waiting to go to class, and one of them is in surgery.”
Another student, Gabbie Vasquez, told the Journal she knew the suspect, but that he did not seem violent.
“He really didn’t talk to nobody,” Vasquez said. “He’s quiet and kind of awkward.”
Watch NBC’s report on the shooting, as aired on Tuesday, below.
[Image: “A 38 Caliber Pistol Stands In Front Of School Textbooks” via Shutterstock]