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. Larry

    What is this schools "anti-bullying" policy? Does it have one? Had this child sought help?

    February 27, 2012 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
  2. ThomP

    Why did this school not have a school resource officer (officer on location)? If it was because of budget issues, how much iis a child's life worth? I can only believe that an officer assigned to the school could have made a difference.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • xeno

      Because people don't want to pay the sort of taxes to support doing something like that in every school, when education has already been cut to the bone as it is.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
  3. duh

    that may be what his classmates told him. good advice for a troubled youth.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • duh

      my response did not link to comment...???

      February 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  4. ILL WILL

    Idiot said cars kill more people than guns.....lol....because I sware a car's main purpose for invention was to kill something.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • Joe

      You Sware? And you are calling other people idiots? I think you better look in the mirror since you are having trouble spelling a 3rd grade spelling word.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • GCX

      You're calling people idiots and you can't spell a simple word right. Then you snap like you've got a pole stuck up where the sun doesn't shine. Who's the real idiot? And get some ice for your bum too.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:46 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Sirned

    What's up with the violent angry whites in this country...Republicans are the leading examples what happened when their politicians make killing another acceptable by saying publicly things like don't retreat reload and killing a few senators is the only way to get the Ryan Plan passed...I blame the Republicans that defend an agenda and the NRA and their profit more than common sense laws that will help keep guns out of the hands of irresponsible people and kids hands...

    February 27, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • steve

      stupid opening statement
      i don't believe white people have the market cornered on violent deaths!
      geesh what a dumbo!

      February 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thinking7

      If you had ever been to a prison, you would see that the overwhelming majority are blacks and hispanics. This is not a racist comment. It is just fact based. If you look at any city that has a high crime rate, you will find that the majority of people there are black and hispanics. It is sad that a few white people that do these senseless crimes make you think that the majority are white.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ronnie

      Seriously you wanna make this racist and political with your comment....How about parents no matter of what race being parents again!

      February 27, 2012 at 2:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Coy Swint

      Those dad gome guns are at it again! I blame all the guns! If only those guns would learn how to behave themselves instead of acting all wild and pointing themselves at people!

      February 27, 2012 at 2:42 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Brenda

    Did anyone hear about Thurston High School in Springfield Oregon. The kid that did the shooting we found out later had also killed his parents before he showed up at the school that morning. He was a privileged child. Both parents worked, and a beautiful home. He went into the cafeteria before classes started in the morning. We had to wait to be sure our loved ones was okay. My sister was there for hours in lock down.
    Lets stop pointing fingers and trying the race card. Grow up. We need to solve a problem. The kids think this is a easy way out. But it is just like drugs or drinking, killing is just making your problems worse. There not going away.
    Most of our schools now have fences around them. Most you can only enter one way. It is sad. Stop the bulling and using the race card. It doesn't solve anything at all.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
  7. chelsey

    Its funny how there are metal detectors in the inner city schools but where these type of events happen there is always none. All schools should have metal detectors people!! This can and does happen anywhere.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rbnlegnd

      This is unlikely everywhere. There is no school were people say "well, it's sad, but, we pretty much expect school shootings here, it happens every few weeks". In each place it happens, it's unusual. There isn't a place we can rule out, because every one of these is so unusual.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • jon

      None of the schools I attended in my youth (all on Long Island) had metal detectors. It's strange that there were no school shootings.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:29 pm | Report abuse |
  8. dee dee

    this is very tragic i am very sorry to hear about this tragedy for all of the families of the victims and the family of the shooter who was most likely bullied and/or aggitated by others to go into a rage and out of control (continual pick-on-someone)

    February 27, 2012 at 2:24 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Kerry

    RIP, sorry for the victims and the families. Still waters run deep. This is a tragedy for the shooter and his family as well.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Court

    I just feel really bad for the grandparents. They didnt ask to raise this kid

    February 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  11. ILL WILL

    young isolated depressed = taliban suicide bomber

    February 27, 2012 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
  12. duvo

    lemme guess....white guy???...

    February 27, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Thinking7

      The majority of criminals are blacks and hispanics. This is not meant to be rude or racist. It is just the facts. It is also a fact that white men/boys generally do the shooting crimes like this. They are by far the minority of crimes committed in this country. Very sad but true. If you want to point to race, just check out a prison – filled with blacks and hispanics. Hardly any white guys.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:30 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Hobbes

    I love America!!! Land of opportunity and freedom...with kids killing each other, robbing and raping their elders. Anyone catch the news on a WWII Vet 80yrs+ got knocked out and carjacked in broad daylight. He fell and broke his right leg, and crawled from the pump to the store with customers not even paying attention to him...of course, he was black. I love America.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Wyatt

    Alll the gun control activist are saying "See how the gun killed the people, the gun is to blame". I'm just gonna let that soak in.

    February 27, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • jon

      Typical ignorant statement by a conservative. "Guns don't kill people". You know what pal? You're right. The killers didn't need the weapon to kill someone and injure four others. They could've just done it with their bare hands.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • timmy

      ....or a knife, or poison, or pipe bombs. He also could have waited until after school and ran him over with a car.

      February 27, 2012 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      @jon: Please do me the favor of putting a sign in the yard that states "I do not believe in the Second Amendment and do not own any guns." One last thing jon if you are so worried about everyone's safety to state that guns should be banned. I bet you are still driving a car? Cars kill more people than guns, so ban cars first!!

      February 27, 2012 at 3:45 pm | Report abuse |
  15. steve

    It's very sad what is happending today, but in fact if this had anything to do with bullying (no evidence) of that, parents better start taking action to talk to their kids. I don't care how big you are or how tough you are. Someboy out there gonna get ya! Beware before you are the next victim!

    February 27, 2012 at 2:27 pm | Report abuse |
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