Two 17-year-old students were expected to survive after being wounded in a shooting Monday at a Virginia high school, police said. The suspect has not been arrested.
Newport News Police Chief Steve Drew said a boy was shot on the side of his face and a girl was shot in her lower leg at Heritage High School. They were taken to a hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
At least two other people were injured in connection with the shooting and taken to the hospital, Drew said. One person had a “sprained or broken arm” and one person with asthma had “breathing issues,” he said. A fifth person may have gone directly to the hospital, he added.
The suspect was not in custody and knew the victims, police said. It was not immediately clear if the shooter was a student.
Drew said that police believe “there was some type of altercation.” Police received a call of a shooting at 11:38 a.m. Monday. Officers responded, evacuated the school and took the victims to the hospital.
Meanwhile, the FBI and state and local police were searching the school for any students or staff still taking shelter, Drew said.
Students were evacuated and sent to nearby tennis courts, where parents were being instructed to meet them. Videos shared to social media showed students and adults gathered by the fences. Mental health counselors were on the scene.
Police said reports of active shooters at other schools in the city were false.
“Closely monitoring the horrifying reports of a shooting at Heritage High School in Newport News,” U.S. Sen. Mark Warner said on Twitter. “Praying for the health and safety of all involved as we wait to learn more.”
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam said on Twitter that he and his team were in close contact with first responders. Virginia Rep. Bobby Scott said on Twitter his staff was monitoring the situation.
About 1,300 students attend Heritage High School, according Newport News Public Schools. Students returned to classes Sept. 8 and were in their second full week at the school.
Newport News is located at the southeastern end of the Virginia Peninsula, just north of Norfolk.
Several other schools across the U.S. have also seen shootings in school buildings since returning to in-person learning this year.
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