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.

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[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. BifBuffo

    First we dismantle all programs that deal with crazy people. Then we place them on the street and expect them to comply with their meds. Then we saturate the streets with easily obtained firearms and hallucinogenic drugs. Then we antagonize the crazy people with ultraviolet sick media. Then we have mass shootings on a daily basis and are bewildered.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • Guest

      We?? WE do that huh? I know I don't...so maybe you should define the 'we'... because YOU sound crazy.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Ivan

    This is a reflection on society. Whether the shooter was bullied or just plain disturbed, the means and motivation to do so will invariably go back to the family. I do not feel safe having my son in a public school anymore.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      Considering that a public school is one of the least likely places to get shot ( especially compared to a home) I do not understand your logic.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:38 pm | Report abuse |
  3. tullymd

    The parents should suffer the penalty of the crime if the murder weapon was obtained from the home. The perpetrator should be executed and his body launched into outerspace. All records of his existence should be erased. Three cheers for the NRA. You have to give the devil his due. They have been so successful they won't ever have to fend off calls for gun control no matter what heinous crimes are commited with guns. They favored letting those on the terrorist watch list obtain firearms or so I've read.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • yuri pelham

      I think you are taking this much too seriously. These things happen.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fredflintstone

      I have my guns for people like you who want to take away my rights.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve Lyons

      You have read that incorrectly.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve Lyons

      You read that in Daily KOS am I right?

      February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • James B

      In Virginia a pro gun state if your kid uses your gun you get a year no parole automatically. 48 of the 50 states have such laws.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • tullymd

      Thanks JamesB. Re NRA and terrorist watch list I googled this. What I say is true. So swallow that gun nuts

      February 27, 2012 at 1:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • James B

      TullyMD, what makes you think the NRA is against these laws they are big supporters of criminal misuse punishment over restricting the rights of everyone. I am pro gun and support such rules.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Fredflintstone

    Well another no child left behind involved in violence.........go figure.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • murgatroid

      30,000 gun deaths each year half by suicide. No one should even think of taking away your right to bare arms.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      I hate long sleeves too!

      February 27, 2012 at 2:44 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Steve Lyons

    Name the shooter please, and put him/her down NOW.

    February 27, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Bayousara

    It is unfortunate the schools still refuse to screen all students entering schools for weapons. Until they do this, this crap isn't going to stop. Parents need to insist on this, and it doesn't matter how big the school is. We have had these mass shootings here in Oregon, where are schools are far smaller than big city schools.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Steve Lyons

      Ha ! The ACLU is all over you for that one.
      Back when I was in High School the staff knew which kids to screen based on their behavior. They are prohibited from doing that today.....

      February 27, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Steve Lyons

    Have they arrested the parents at this time?

    February 27, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  8. JM

    Other students identify shooter as TJ Lane

    February 27, 2012 at 1:03 pm | Report abuse |
  9. DP44022

    It's starting to look like it was a jealous ex-boyfriend shooting the new boyfriend.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • Common sense over fear.

      @DP44022
      You mean the 5 new BF? Come on man…

      February 27, 2012 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
  10. MaryM

    gstlab, And there you have it folks. Your typical religious right wing nut job. And they will kill you if you disagree with them.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Dean

    These incidents were never heard of back when we allowed God in our schools.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:07 pm | Report abuse |
    • Common sense over fear.

      @Dean
      Your ‘god’ and his followers have the longest rap sheet for murder and theft in all of history.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • MarkinFL

      Students are quite free to pray in school. What's your problem?

      February 27, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  12. BanGuns

    Another victory for the 2nd Ammendment!!!

    Guns make the world safe.

    If only everyone had conceal and carry this wouldn't have happened!!

    Remember the 3rd grader who got shot? If only she had a conceal and carry permit...things woulda ended differently.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andrew M

      Both guns in this your comment were obtained illegalyfrom the parents. People need to understand that you can control guns all you want but that wont help. Why not instead of forcing more gun control, we teach children more about guns so that situations like this do not happen again.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • James B

      Guns do not make one safe or unsafe, almost every nation has private firearms ownership and the most strict nations are not the safest and the least strict are not the most violent. Gun laws also do little to stop murder for the most part; the UK murder rate has been for the most part steady through out the years when gun ownership was unrestricted to heavily restricted.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Andrew M & James B

      So you're basically a proponent of leaving the safety of people you would want to protect in the hands of careless gun owners, huh? "Just leave it to the gun owning parents of the depressed kid." lol

      BTW, the UK has a very low homicide rate compared to the US – which proves that you are a moron since you would choose to site something so f'n stupidly incorrect in your argument.

      BG!!

      February 27, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
  13. MaryM

    gstlab is from the WBC. (westboro baptist church) And there you have it folks. Your typical religious right wing nut job. And they will kill you if you disagree with them. Do not let these insane people anywhere near the white house

    February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Cheryl

    CAN WE PLEASE HELP OUR COUNTRY! Kids are crying out in desperation with violence. A child DIED at school today and all the school I work for cares about are freakin' test scores. When can I be a teacher again and not a test score promoter?

    February 27, 2012 at 1:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • ima teacher too

      Cheryl- We're all caught in that web, but how is that related to the shooter's choice to let loose? Are we to serve as parents as well?

      February 27, 2012 at 1:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Common sense over fear.

      @Cheryl
      All a school SHOULD care about is test scores…that’s their job. It is YOUR job and ONLY your job to raise YOUR kid.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • teacher

      agreed!!!

      February 27, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. westward

    Every school should have a metal detector at a controlled entrance. If schools can't guarantee the basic safety of our kids, they need to be shut down.

    February 27, 2012 at 1:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Idiot

      A kid with a gun will shoot the guard before he has a chance to do anything if that's the case. You act as though kids are incredibly dumb and would walk through a metal detector willingly with a gun hidden in the backpack. A real solution would be to give the principal a gun.

      February 27, 2012 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
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