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. Aimee

    Just to curb the "ghetto" remarks. This school is NOT near cleveland. It's about an hour away and in an UPPER middle class neighborhood.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Jomm

      SO true. This was in a well to do middle class neighborhood.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
  2. David Murray

    This is what happens when you create "gun-free zones" They should just rename them to "defenseless victim zones" How many more people have to die before they figure out how ineffective such a law is.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
    • Fair Taxes

      If the zone was "gun free" where did the bullets come from? An alternative universe?

      February 27, 2012 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
    • The REAL Truth...

      sure Dave, lets give every teacher, vice-principal and principal a side arm in school. While we're at it, why not make it mandatory that every 9th grader on up carry?? That should solve the problem, right??

      February 27, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  3. Shawn

    When the officials say there was only one gun man, leave it alone. Move on with your reporting. I'm tired of the anchors and reporters trying to sensationalize every tid bit of information. Just report the news. That's all you have to do. A tragedy for sure. Unfortunate and I hope a speedy recovery to those injured. Reporters make the situation worse when they dig incessantly for news where there is none. I don't need you guys to "create" new news...

    February 27, 2012 at 9:30 am | Report abuse |
  4. Brian

    Its a bullying issue I guarantee it it has every sign of it. People just dont wanna think that their son or daughter caused this spark of insanity but wake up America know what your kids are doing and stop letting Facebook raise them. My boys aren't allowed on the media crap wagon and they are more respectful and have respect for others!!

    February 27, 2012 at 9:31 am | Report abuse |
  5. AL

    i bet you 10 t0 1 that this family were fox news junkies.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
  6. cntrygrl53

    First off our prayers go out to the families of the students who were injured. Now I grew up with guns in the house my dad was an avid hunter. But he taught us to respect guns. We have forgotten to teach our youth respect an not to bully. If you haven't seen Rachelle's Challenge Please check it out. Its sad that they've turned to guns to solve their problems instead of the people who are in charge who could or should help. My dad use to say its not guns who kill people its people who kill people an that the gun was just the means. We have guns in our home, under lock an key so to speak, but they're used to hunt. Nothing more nothing less, an our kids have all been taught to respect guns. I really feel for these parents of the injured students an the one who has done the shooting his/her family as well.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
    • tullymd

      In the neighborhood of 30,000 gun deaths per year. Is the ok by you? Well I've gotten used to it as long as it's no one I know. Long live the NRA. May every home have an assault rifle.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  7. George

    I remember being bullied in school. I didn't go get a gun, I just punched the person who was bullying me in the face. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose but at least you walk away from it and maybe get some respect Getting a gun is the act of a coward.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Matt

      Sadly George this cannot happen in schools anymore. Some districts enable the bully because the person fighting back and standing up for themselves often gets in more trouble than the bully.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim Bob

      THANK YOU! This is just crazy. Then, the kid gave up after he shot others, so he wouldn't get hurt himself. Lock him up, throw away the key, and never let him out.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:37 am | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      tell me about it. dungeons and dragons? band? i'm just lucky i didn't have braces and glasses.. now *those* guys were losers. 😉

      never did it occur to me that i could get a gun and start shooting people..

      course, motive hasn't been determined hear yet..

      February 27, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Tom A.

      Bullying is mostly definitely a problem. And just as big of a problem... the parents of the bullies. Usually, its easy to tell how the kid became a bully. The apple doesn't fall far from the tree.

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

    It is anger – at home; in school; relationships; movies. Some people cannott cope or process this anger. in their heads so they shoot. There is PROBABLY a lot of hurt in their homes and it is carried with them and passed on.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:32 am | Report abuse |
  9. AL

    10 t0 1 they grew up in a home full of hate.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
  10. crabman

    you make it sound like the guns made are just given away

    February 27, 2012 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Brittany

      They pretty much are. Havn't you ever been on any classifides ads on the internet?? Bro you can buy a gun off craigslist with out being checked!! hahaha... I'm not anti-guns, but you can pretty much get a gun anywhere these days. welcome to Ohio.

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

      hey crabman

      February 27, 2012 at 12:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • Debra

      Actually, if you open a bank account in Michigan they are given away. How stupid is that?

      February 27, 2012 at 1:14 pm | Report abuse |
  11. ColB

    Why would you make such a stupid statement?

    February 27, 2012 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Samwise

      Dain bramage.

      February 27, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  12. mike

    Probably bullied for sure. good for him. they deserved what was coming. I blame the school system for not responding sooner. teachers know who the bullies are and who's being bullied, they just look the other way. Then unfortunately the victim results to what he/she know will stop it... suicide or violence. wake up people.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
    • Jeremy

      They deserved what was coming? Are you serious?

      February 27, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
  13. bobby

    I wonder if this was another teen on Anti-depressants involved in a school shooting..

    February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
  14. Mastodonrocks

    Agreed, guns have a bad habit of waking up and going to school to shoot kids.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
    • DonJose

      Good point. In reality, kids (and adults) are short without guns.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Missunderstood

      *Like*

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

      To listen to most liberals, you would think so. Those pesky guns....just won't behave. Always gotta run around hurtin people.

      Luckily, the guns I have at home have never tried to hurt me. Funny, they just sit there all day. They never do anything until I pick them up. Hmmmm???

      February 27, 2012 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
  15. Brian

    I'm a dad of a gay child and I have seen how kids hate and bully its shocking trust me. Social media is at fault here someone needs to sue these stations that put the reality shows of hate on TV watch Jersey shore or some of the other hate monger reality shows and you will see where the ideas come from.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:35 am | Report abuse |
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