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. TomT

    A parent on phone with CNN right now says that her daughter, a senior, was texting with her throughout. Daughter said she thought shooter was a student because - get this - another student saw them bring a gun to school. Sigh

    February 27, 2012 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  2. Jake

    Right.. it was probably his dads or somthing. But still I mean anybody who lives in an inner city or close to one like these kids today did, can get a pistol easy. This is 2012.. were the tupac, eminem, gangster wannabe generation. and im sure hes right. There are probably only a few hundred murdered in american prisons yearly. The point is that the action is what we should be attemption to prevent.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:39 am | Report abuse |
  3. Trey

    You're right... someone should definatley ban guns from schools. That would stop this problem right away. If you ban the guns, then no one can take them there. Problem solved.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
    • katie

      I hope you're being sarcastic. That's way too logical of a statement. People that go on shooting rampages cannot possibly be logical thinkers.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:33 am | Report abuse |
    • TheMovieFan

      Who is right?

      February 27, 2012 at 10:38 am | Report abuse |
    • victoria

      Guns are banned from schools...duh...they are hidden when brought in.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:52 am | Report abuse |
    • Nick-o

      guns have never been allowed in school. what on earth are you talking about?

      February 27, 2012 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • duh79

      And two years ago in a community 15 minutes away from this high school a student tried to slash the throat of a classmate with an x-acto knife.... guns, knives, its not a matter of the choice of weapon, its a problem with the child, the family. Taking guns away doesn't fix the problem, they'll find another way to bring the hurt they are feeling inside onto others.

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

      I hope you are being sarcastic? Schools are "no carry zones" you cannot legally carry a gun in or 100ft from a school. To solve the problem would be to allow guns to be carried by staff that choose to do so, that way the defensless students have some protection from these cowards!

      February 27, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      Trey: You are absolutely correct! Guns should be banned from school. Oh wait they are already. This is the root of the problem with gun bans, "CRIMINALS DO NOT FOLLOW THE LAW". idiots!

      February 27, 2012 at 11:41 am | Report abuse |
    • sarah

      genius.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
    • Ohio Mom

      It is illegal in Ohio to carry any weapons (knifes, guns even pepper spray) into school unless you are a law enforcement officer.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:54 am | Report abuse |
    • Opal Monroe

      Guns are banned you bigot. Just because their banned dosent mean no one will bring them. I don't justify the kids actions but kids are mean, he clearly shot them for a reason

      February 27, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
  4. AC-CLE

    I live about 25min from HS – news is now reporting that 3 of the students are critical (4th taken to another local hospital). They're starting to release HS students now (they've been releasing the younger kids for a little while now)

    February 27, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
  5. KEKC

    Ban guns. Period.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:40 am | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      that is ridiculous! you blame guns, they ahve been around forever, their was murder way before guns!

      February 27, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • You're stupid

      What happens when they use knives or their car? How are you going to eat your steak or drive to and from work? You're an idiot. If this kid was set on what he wanted to do, whether he had access to a gun or not, he'd have found a way to carry out his acts.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
  6. MALAKA

    THIS is what happens when you cut public funding for school counselors and psychologists! This has NOTHING to do with school prayer.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Keith

      School psychologists? What school has a psychologist prior to an incident? Diiiir.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • April

      Agreed! My school counselor saved my life in high school. Middle and high school kids need someone they can trust to talk to in school!

      February 27, 2012 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
    • Frank

      Thats ridiculous. Funding for those things has steadilly increased over the last 20 years, yet so has shootings. Why dont you look into the issue a little bit before deciding you have all the answers?

      February 27, 2012 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
  7. MITT ROMNEY

    The shooter was a relative of Rick Santurum! like Rick he dislikes youths who are aspiring for higher education!

    February 27, 2012 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Sonnie2

      If PARENTS WHO ARE RESPONSUBLE would take the time to be good parents, this sort of thing would go down by 90%. We have lots of kids with no guideance and on prescription drugs to control them. And yes people die driving cars a ta much higher rate. Are we going to ban cars. The anti gun crowd will be out in full force today with all kinds of unreasonable retoric. It is a sad day in history for this trype of person to willfull try to do extreme harm with a weapon.
      We have lots of fruitcakes out there today.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:53 am | Report abuse |
  8. Fred

    I`m from the area, have friends that have gone there and I know a few who still go there. No matter how strict gun control is, you will never get rid of the few psychos in the world who are selfish worthless human beings. I am a strong gun supporter and do not believe to any extent that gun control would have ever stopped this situation.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Ernie

      How can just across the border (Canada) control the psychos ? Easy: they control ALL guns

      February 27, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      Canadians have enough French in them to lay low and let the invasion begin... Just sit back and make a pot of coffee...

      February 27, 2012 at 10:22 am | Report abuse |
    • chris

      whether they control them or not, they still allow guns! you can take guns across the border into canada... i've done it, legally, on a hunting trip.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:28 am | Report abuse |
    • justageek

      So no one in Canada has ever been shot? Pfft.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:15 am | Report abuse |
    • justageek

      So no one in Canada has ever been shot??

      February 27, 2012 at 11:20 am | Report abuse |
  9. Jason

    Arrest the parents, start holding parents accountable for their children's actions.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
    • KEKC

      Exactly. Parents should be responsible for not storing guns securely.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Bob from Accounting

      Dude how you going to arrest parents? Parents aren't always the problem...I have two brothers, One has been locked up multiple times for violent crimes too, the other is pretty much a weed head, then you have me who has done four years in the military, graduated from college, never had any illegal issues and gives back to the community...my parents raised us all the same and were very strict with love...Not always parents fault man...

      February 27, 2012 at 9:46 am | Report abuse |
    • Sonnie2

      I agree, the PARENTS need to take responsibility.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:54 am | Report abuse |
  10. Auntie51109

    Ten bucks says the shooter was on prozac, lithium, ritalin or some other "mood stabilizing" prescription drug.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
  11. mike moore

    I tuned into CNN just in time for Soledad O'Brien to in essence say: we don't know what's going on inside, but kids are texting their parents to say they're hiding in the cafeteria.

    I have to believe the police asked CNN to report this, because I can't imagine that Ms. O'Brien and her producers are STUPID, HEADLINE THIRSTY, RAGING IDIOTS who would announce on national TV where kids are hiding without being sure that the kids are, in fact, entirely safe, wherever they may be hiding.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:42 am | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      Because the shooter that is arrested might break free and find the ones hiding?

      February 27, 2012 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Fitz

      Excellent point.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:47 am | Report abuse |
    • Fitz

      Because as long as people are in hiding, the police can't be 100% sure that there aren't other students.

      February 27, 2012 at 9:49 am | Report abuse |
    • ThatsJustCrazy

      No kidding that is crazing. If anyone gets shot there CNN should be held accountable for calling out the hiding spot. Just stupid!

      February 27, 2012 at 9:50 am | Report abuse |
    • The REAL Truth...

      People puh-lease... The shooter no doubt was tuned into CNN to get their daily dose of "where the kids are hiding out" info.. Really? The shooter is listening to CNN?

      February 27, 2012 at 9:57 am | Report abuse |
  12. jom didily Om

    Now its time for all you pro-gun control morons to start preaching your "ban all guns" B.S. REMEMBER, CRIMINALS WILL NOT GIVE UP THEIR GUNS AND WE WILL BE POWERLESS TO PROTECT OUR LIVES. If you advocate a situation where I cannot defend my life, then your a piece of crap. PERIOD.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
    • tubes

      I believe it's "you're" a piece of crap.

      February 27, 2012 at 10:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Dana

      Yeah? Someone shoots you first before you even draw your precious gun. Are we living in 19 century or something? You must be from the South...

      February 27, 2012 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • Tyler

      Only a person from the north would be arrogant enough to think that's an insult.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:23 am | Report abuse |
    • Steve

      in an active shooter situaiton, the shooter may shoot the first victim, but should ne neutrilzed by the armed citizen before he/she can shoot another one.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:32 am | Report abuse |
    • Ge

      Hmmm. This happened in the north yet you make a statement about the south. Maybe you should think before you make an idiot of yourself.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:36 am | Report abuse |
    • ms

      Im from the south...just so you know, that remark is as racist and ignorant as the one to which you responded. Ty and have a nice day. God bless the family that lost their child and those injured.

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

      I agree in concept—somewhat—with what you're saying, Jom didly Om, but it would be more effective if you interspersed some intelligence into what you write.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:31 am | Report abuse |
    • You're stupid

      Try to put me in a situation where I can't defend myself and my family. I obey the laws and have every right to conceal and carry to protect myself and my family. We'll see who is left cold and stiff.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:39 am | Report abuse |
    • The Butcher

      And I counted..... zero posts wanting to ban guns so far. Now you look like a silly redneck.
      If anything, everyone agrees that Teachers should be allowed to carry guns as a means to defend themselves and the students. So you can go back watching more Glenn "the sky is falling" Beck.

      February 27, 2012 at 11:43 am | Report abuse |
    • leeintulsa

      @butcher: who's everyone? when i was in school, there were half a dozen teachers my friends and i could overpower. and we were nerds.. some of the jocks and rats could have taken any teacher in the school. no way i want guns brought into school intentionally..

      February 28, 2012 at 8:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Duke5343

      No Problem they can get a bullet proof paper to stop the bullets like when Clinton signed in the TOUGH new stalking laws, dont need no gun, paper would stop bullets until the cops arrived

      February 27, 2012 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  13. Fonz

    The shooter was just upset that "Hugo" didn't win best picture at the Oscars last night.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      I didn't even think of that!!

      February 27, 2012 at 9:45 am | Report abuse |
  14. Real direct

    A lot of sugar coated statement now.....wonder why?

    February 27, 2012 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
  15. Tre

    Prayers go out to those children and their families. We never know what people are going through and shouldn't jump to conclusion. We should also pray for the suspect that is in custody for the shootings.

    February 27, 2012 at 9:44 am | Report abuse |
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