February 27th, 2012
02:13 PM ET

Student shot at Ohio high school dies, police say

More on this story from CNN affiliates WOIO-TV, WEWS-TV, WJW-TV and WKYC-TV.

iReport: Are you there? Let us know but please stay safe.

[Updated at 4:04 p.m. ET] Chardon Police Chief Timothy McKenna said in a press conference today that two of the victims in Monday's shootings were in critical condition, one was in serious condition and one was in stable condition.

[Updated at 2:58 p.m. ET] Danny Komertz, a student at Chardon High School said that he saw shooter T.J. lane point a gun directly at a group of students before shooting them.

"I looked straight ahead and I saw a gun pointing at a group of four guys sitting at a table and he was able two feet away from them," Komertz said. "He just fired two quick shots at them. I saw one student fall. I saw the other hiding, trying to get cover underneath the table."

Komertz said that he felt that by his demeanor, the shooter was targeting that group.

"It was clearly to me that he was aiming right at them," Komertz told CNN. "He wasn't shooting around the cafeteria at all. He was directly aiming at the four of them."

Komertz said he then ran out the door with his friends. While he was trying to escape he said he heard another two shots fired from behind him.

"I just can't believe it. I don't think it's real," said student Danny Komertz, who witnessed the shooting. "And I just, it kills me that I saw someone hiding, and now that someone is now dead."

[Updated at 2:13 p.m. ET] A fatally wounded student was identified by the hospital that treated him as Daniel Parmertor.

"We are shocked by this senseless tragedy," Parmertor's family said in a statement released by MetroHealth Medical Center. "Danny was a bright young boy who had a bright future ahead of him. The family is torn by this loss. We ask that you respect our privacy during this difficult time."

[Updated 1:19 p.m. ET] A student who hid in a classroom at Chardon High School said that T.J. Lane, the suspect in Monday's shooting, "was a nice guy" who he never suspected would shoot anyone.

“He just came from a really broken down home and he was living with his grandparents," Evan Erasmus, a senior at the school told CNN.  "He was more of a quiet type of kid. He was really nice, though, if you did talk to him.”

Erasmus said that Lane and some of the victims "used to be friends" but more in middle school and early high school.

“He was one of the nicest kids there…," Erasmus said. "It was really shocking that it was him.”

Erasmus told CNN that he believed T.J. Lane was either a sophomore or junior at the school.

He said that Lane was sitting about a table away from some of the victims.

Erasmus said he heard the victims "were all sitting there and then he just stood up and that’s when it all started."

Meanwhile, he and the other students in a nearby classroom, "turned the lights off and we headed into a corner" after the shooting.

[Updated 12:52 p.m. ET] Witnesses and one of the shooting victims have identified the gunman as T.J. Lane, according to The Plain Dealer of Cleveland.

[Updated 12:04 p.m. ET] Police say one student has died from the shootings at Chardon High School this morning. Five students were shot in total, officials said.

[Updated 11:58 a.m. ET] A parent of children who attend Chardon High School says the gunman in today's shooting had specific targets and was not shooting randomly, according to a report from CNN affiliate WJW-TV.

[Updated 11:43 a.m. ET] The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives says it has been given one handgun from the Ohio high school shooting scene to do an emergency trace.

The Geauga County sheriff's office is executing searches in the case with the assistance of ATF agents, a law enforcement official said.

[Updated 11:13 a.m. ET] Geauga County Sheriff Daniel McClelland says a K-9 unit tracked the shooting suspect, who was apprehended "some distance from the school," according to a report on CNN affiliate WJW-TV.

[Updated 10:54 a.m. ET] The suspect in the shooting of five students at Chardon High School turned himself in to bystanders in Chardon Township, a law enforcement official told CNN affiliate WKYC-TV.

[Updated 10:43 a.m. ET] A student at Chardon High School, Evan Erasmus, told CNN affiliate WEWS-TV that the suspect in Monday's shootings may have posted a threatening message Sunday night on the social networking service Twitter.

"I think he said that he was going to bring a gun to school and I think that everyone just blew it off like he was joking," Erasmus said.

[Updated 10:34 a.m. ET] Law enforcement officials say they received reports that a teacher chased the shooter at Chardon High School out of the building.

[Updated 10:31 a.m. ET] There are five victims of the shooting at a Chardon High School in surburban Cleveland, law enforcement officials said.

[Updated 10:05 a.m. ET] Those wounded at Chardon High School in Ohio are students at another school in nearby Auburn, said Evan Erasmus, a student at Chardon. They had been waiting in the Chardon cafeteria for a bus to Auburn when they were shot, Erasmus said.

[Updated 9:53 a.m. ET] Four students were wounded when a gunman opened fire in the cafeteria of a suburban Cleveland high school just as the school day was beginning Monday, law enforcement officials said.

The suspected Chardon High School shooter - believed to be a student, according to a school official - was in custody, FBI Special Agent Scott Wilson told reporters.

Wilson declined to say how badly the injured students had been hurt.

"We just hope that they're OK," he said.

School administrators locked down schools in the city of Chardon, Ohio, about 30 miles east of Cleveland. and assured parents that all remaining students were safe.

Still, parents eager to retrieve their children hurried to school buildings, forming long lines as school officials checked identifications before releasing students. At one point, black-clad SWAT team members walked by parents waiting outside the middle school, enhancing what was a surreal scene for many.

"This stuff doesn't happen here at Chardon. Everybody's a little upset," said one parent who was preparing to pick up his daughter, a 10th-grader who had been evacuated to Maple Elementary School.

Despite initial reports that two people were involved, it appeared only one person was responsible for the shooting, Superintendent Joseph Bergant said.

"My understanding is there was one gunman," he said. Bergant said he believed the suspect is a student.

The shooting occurred around 7:40 a.m. just as school was getting started for the day, school board member Larry Reiter said. It happened inside the cafeteria, which is near the entrance to the school, he said.

It was unclear how the suspect was taken into custody.

School officials locked the high school down following the shooting.

One parent told CNN affilaite WKYC that her daughter had texted from a closet to tell her that there had been a shooting at the school, but that she was okay.

Chardon is a small city of about 5,100 people 30 miles east of Cleveland. About 1,150 students attend the high school, which is next to Chardon Middle School and across the street from Maple Elementary School.

[Updated 9:48 a.m. ET] A youth suspected in the shooting at an Ohio high school fled the building but was caught nearby, according to a Plain Dealer report on Cleveland.com.

Three boys and a girl were injured in the shooting which happened in the Chardon High School cafeteria before classes started, the Plain Dealer report said.

"Parent Jeannette Roth, who had heard from her son Joshua, a junior, said he told her the shooting happened while students were eating breakfast in the cafeteria and waiting for first period.  Suddenly a boy 'stood up and started shooting, and then it was chaos,'" the Plain Dealer report read.

[Updated 9:27 a.m. ET] Four students were wounded in the school shooting Monday morning at the high school in Chardon, Ohio, officials said. The extent of their injuries was unknown.

[Updated 9:21 a.m. ET] At least three students were injured when an armed individual entered the cafeteria of a high school near Cleveland and opened fire just as the school day was beginning Monday, police and the school superintendent said.

School officials said they did not know how badly the injured students had been wounded, but some had been taken by helicopter to the hospital.

Police took a suspect into custody, locked the high school down and assured parents that all remaining students were safe.

Despite initial reports that two people were involved, it appeared only one person was responsible for the shooting, Superintendent Joseph Bergant said.

"My understanding is there was one gunman," he said. Bergant said he believed the suspect is a student.

School officials said the rest of the high school's students were being evacuated to a nearby elementary school.

Parents gathered outside the school administration building, hoping for information about the incident and how to retrieve their children.

"My daughter is at the school and she's texting me saying they're in a closet right now and they're OK," a parent speaking to CNN affiliate WKYC said.

Chardon is a small city of about 5,100 people 30 miles east of Cleveland. About 1,150 students attend the high school, which is next to Chardon Middle School and across the street from Maple Elementary School.

[Updated 9:06 a.m. ET] The superintendent of Chardon schools said Monday he believes there was only one gunman involved in the shooting at Chardon High School.

[Updated 9:01 a.m. ET] A person who fired shots at a high school near Cleveland on Monday morning is in custody, a school official said.

[Updated 8:55 a.m. ET] At least three students were wounded when two people entered the cafeteria of a high school near Cleveland, Ohio, and opened fire just as the school day was beginning, police and a school board member said.

The shooting happened at Chardon High School in Chardon, Ohio, Lt. John Hiscox of the Geauga County Sheriff's Office said.

Three or four students were hit by the gunfire, said Larry Reiter of the Chardon Schools Board of Education. He did not know their conditions, but said helicopters had been called to take the injured to a hospital.

Chardon is a small city of about 5,100 people 30 miles east of Cleveland. About 1,150 students attend the high school, which is next to Chardon Middle School and across the street from Maple Elementary School.

[Updated 8:43 a.m. ET] Two shooters entered Chardon High School and and shot three or four students in the cafeteria, school board member Larry Reiter told CNN. He did not know their condition.

[Posted 8:38 a.m. ET] A shooting has occurred at Chardon High School near Cleveland, Ohio, Lt. John Hiscox of the Geauga County Sheriff's Office said Monday.

FULL STORY
soundoff (2,226 Responses)
  1. TJ

    Maybe someone can explain why we didn't have school shootings 50 years ago. It's not like guns are a new thing. This is a major breakdown of our society. It has nothing to do with guns. It has everything to do with parents.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:53 am | Report abuse |
    • Brittany

      not parents. its ignorant people who dont use their brain or common sense. the problem isnt the guns, peer pressure, parents, friends, etc. the problem is the actual person behind the shootings.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
    • nh

      Exactly

      February 27, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Hank

      Maybe because guns weren't available as wide spread as they are today (really go look it up) and as small as they are today someone can conceal one so easily and nobody would know.

      What do I win?

      Though I agree our society is such a joke today with violence and everything else is ridiculous. We cannot even have a political discussion among the leaders of this country without it breaking down into name calling, what does that tell you.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • GauisCaesar

      I agree somewhat. This generation's parents want to be "friends" with their friends instead of their parents. But I think a larger part of it is the entertainment industry and their aim to continually move the line of decency. For us, we know people like Lil Wayne are just uneducated idiots, but when you are young, you are impressionable. Also, Obama (or any president) should NEVER tell America he likes music like that! Pretend violence IS harmful especially if the people watching dont know it is pretend!

      February 27, 2012 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • James

      It's definitely not like guns weren't available. Heck, they were even left loaded laying around the house. I think the difference is how people approach conflict. It used to be if you had a dispute, you go behind the school, have a fist fight and it's done with. It allowed people to solve disputes before they escalated into something far more serious. Now if you do that you get arrested if you just mention that you have a beef with somebody. I know it's very non P.C. but people are not robots and they need to be able to settle their differences in a sometimes uncomfortable way so it could maybe prevent worse things down the line.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  2. bad2worse

    Here we go with the gun control nuts. I don't need no stinking gun control. I have perfect gun control. I never miss!

    February 27, 2012 at 10:54 am | Report abuse |
    • martin

      good, solid, critical thinking

      February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • The Genius

      Do you have a newsletter I can subscribe to.

      you world view is interesting and intelligent and I would like to follow it

      February 27, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. jamest

    We didnt fight for the right to possess for the few idiots out there that can not restrain from using the ignorantly. That is fact and if you want to see it other ways then do so and stay quiet about it.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jimbo

    Where's Neal Young when you need him?
    "Gotta get down to it, students are gunning us down,
    Should have been done long ago."

    February 27, 2012 at 10:55 am | Report abuse |
  5. Briar

    You, sir, are a coward and a moron.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
  6. Valerie

    I really hate when people say things like, "stuff like this just doesn't happen here"...............how IGNORANT.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Alan

      The man just found out that people at his child's school were shot. Give the man a break, he's in shock. Are you really hung up on the fact that someone made a weird comment rather than the tragedy of the event?

      February 27, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
  7. Ryan

    Guns are just too dangerous to have around. As are Cars. Do you have an idea how many people are killed by Cars each year? So are Hospitals. Hospitals are literally death traps killing millions of Americans each year. Let's do the responsible thing and ban Guns, Cars and Hospitals so that no one will ever, ever, ever, ever have to die, ever.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • Wow...

      Where's the "like button" ???

      February 27, 2012 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Darth E

      Wow talk about a lack of logic.

      People are killed in cars ACCIDENTALLY, people die in hospitals because they are sick

      People are killed by guns because another person has intent and pulls the trigger. This student didn't just ACCIDENTALLY shoot people today.

      I find your lack of logic and reasoning disturbing

      February 27, 2012 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
  8. colliersf

    If anyone is dumb enough to blame this on gun control your a idiot. If a kid wants a gun they are not hard to find on the streets of any town in this country. If you take guns away from the people we turn into a controlled country.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Wow...

      Wait, you mean government regulation doesn't make problems go away??? Gasp! And here all this time I thought that all it took to get rid of guns was for the government to tell people not to use them. I mean wouldn't everybody in America willingly hand over their weapons and completely ignore the black market if Big Brother told them to? This shatters my fairy tale universe!

      February 27, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Tin foil hat vendor

      In what fantasy world of your would we turn into a "controlled country"? Really what the hell are you talking about?

      Most people DON'T own gun and go about their lives just fine without anyone telling them what to do. If anything they worry about idiots like you who do have guns and live is some fantasy world were the government is always after them (like they don't have better things to do)

      Guess what for a suburban white kid (which is what this kid was) he isn't going into the inner city to get a black market gun there buddy, plain and simple.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  9. Joanne

    Sooooooo happy to be Canadian.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
  10. ian

    the republicans are right. more guns and ammo are the answer. after all, look at how many people jesus and god shot! MORE GUNS, MORE AMMO!!!! why cant you people see this is the answer?

    February 27, 2012 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Janice

      @ ian – show me somewhere in histroy where God or Jesus picked up a gun and shot someone? Your statement is showing your ignorance.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Wow...

      @ Janice
      Show me somewhere ian sounded halfway serious and didn't use sarcasm. Your statement is showing your hair color.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Bohemer

      More to your point>:Cliche "that stuff does not happen here" is pitiful. These outbursts of violence can and DO happen everywhere and anywhere in the US, people just live in self-delusion that "here we are safe". But more guns are definitely not the answer.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • jw

      No. Guns should be illegal, then he'd never be able to get a gun. They'd all just disappear forever...

      February 27, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  11. Jones

    Blacks worry about RACISM. They worry about Society saying bad things about blacks.

    February 27, 2012 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • Trista

      I'm not sure what this attack has to do with race. I'm just praying for the victims and their families.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  12. David

    Anyone who advocates heavy gun control is a crazed lunatic. That is one of the most blatantly unamerican positions someone could hold. It is a direct cause of being brainwashed to fear average citizens on your level, instead of fearing the people who we put in positions of power. They are abusing those positions SO WAKE UP FOR THE LOVE OF GOD THEY ARE KILLING YOU AND EVERY AMERICAN CITIZEN OUT THERE WHILE YOU LET IT HAPPEN IN YOUR DINOSAUR MEDIA INDUCED STUPOR.

    February 27, 2012 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • yuri pelham

      Thorazine start at 10mg twice daily. Then re post after 2 weeks. And good luck to you

      February 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Not All Docs Play Golf

      Your big gun doesn't compensate for a small weenie.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • Dana

      unamerican? Yes, if you've been brainwashed all your life.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Not All Docs Play Golf

      It would be interesting to know which video games this kid has been playing over the past year. I'm just saying.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • Oy

      Yeah... you and your caps lock loving paranoid self sound exactly like the sort of person who should be allowed to have a loaded weapon.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • justlooking14

      Why do people always bring up video games when these things happen? It wasn't the video games, it wasn't the music, it was more than likely a reaction to something that has been brewing for a long time that parents and teachers weren't seeing in the person who did this. I was brought up on video games (yes even violent ones) the thing is that my parents sat me down was explained what was real and not, and that is what needs to happen with video games today. Parents should take a more active role in their childs life.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  13. Janice

    Guns don't kill people! People USE guns to kill people. The problem is not with the guns, but with the gun owners. The guns get into the hands of children through illegal means such as gangs or theft or by irresponsible gun owners. I wonder how many of these gun toting kids have played a video game where they kill people? How about we go back to the basics of parenting? And for those of you who say your child deserves privacy, then you shoudln't be a parent. The only privacy they deserve is simply for modesty. If parents were held legally responsible for the acts of thier children, I think we would all be surprised at how quickly would get involved OR think twice about pro-creating.

    February 27, 2012 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • TrueAmerican

      Epic Fail.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
    • yuri pelham

      The US population is no longer competent to have access to guns. They will have to be confiscated for their own welfare. There are 30,000 gun deaths each year in this dysfunctional country. The problem is innocent people suffer.
      There is a movement within the NRA, I am told, which seeks to transform itself into a gun control organization. Although off topic there is also a movement to restore the draft so that our youth can travel abroad to be maimed and killed. That way it will be less offensive to our taste and we can delude ourselves that they died defending our liberty. The USA... what a joke!

      February 27, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Oy

      "Guns don't kill people! "

      Um. Yeah. They do.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:10 am | Report abuse |
  14. Jones

    BLACKS hoped the shooter isn't black. They worried about RACISM. YES....

    February 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  15. Not All Docs Play Golf

    No matter which side of the NRA you are on, the simple fact is that statistiaclly and mathematically, simply the proliferation of guns, both legal and illegal, means that there will be more gun violence, accidents, etc. Legal guns can be stolen and become illegal guns, so the entire load of guns per capita will predict the number of gun deaths, plain and simple. The argument that it is illegal guns is mute, because the number of illegal guns is simply a manifestation of the general proliferation of guns. This kid probably used his father's guns for this, and his father, if he owns legal guns, is probably an NRA member.

    February 27, 2012 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
    • Ron

      Fact: The deadliest act of school violence in the United States was not committed by someone using a firearm.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • VK

      THANK YOU. I always wonder where people think these "illegal guns" come from, and why they assume they're so different from "legal guns". Do criminal have hidden gun-making factories? Do they import them from some far-off country? Why would they go through the trouble, when they could just steal them from the large stockpile of legal guns the USA has?

      Not agreeing or disagreeing with either side, but both sides should stop trying to force "illegal guns" and "legal guns" into strict categories that have nothing to do with each other.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
    • Sabrina

      Sorry, but you're dead wrong. History and statistics show 100% of the time that the more guns there are the less violence and vice versa. Become educated and stop spewing baseless rhetoric that you *wish* was true.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
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