Report: Law enforcement confirms ‘at least 17 dead’ in Florida school shooting

KC Orcutt

 // Feb 15, 2018

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Tragedy and terror struck a high school in Parkland, Florida, late Wednesday afternoon (Feb. 14) when a shooter, now in police custody, took the lives of at least 17 people and injured at least 14 others.

As reported, law enforcement responded to reports of a shooting at the Marjory Stonemason Douglas High School shortly before 3pm, later detaining 19-year-old former student Nikolas Cruz.

According to reports, the shooting began outside the building and continued inside, with Cruz being taken off campus about an hour after he committed the horrific act.

Both federal and local authorities confirmed with reporters that at this time, there was no indication that the gunman had an accomplice and that the teenager used one AR-15-style semiautomatic rifle and had "countless magazines." It is unclear at this time if he had additional weaponry on hand.

Per authorities, Cruz was previously expelled from the school for "unspecified disciplinary reasons." Some students have given reports of their former classmate, with some referring to him as "troubled" and "obsessed with guns," while others another mentioned that there was a past issue with him threatening other students.

Immediately after gunfire broke out, students and faculty began running out of the building while others went into lockdown in various classrooms in response to the attack. A fire drill at the school was taking place around the time of the shooting, leading to additional confusion across the student body as a result.

According to reports, the town in which the shooting took place was previously named Florida's safest city and has a population of roughly 30,000.

Donald Trump was among those reacting to news of the tragedy on social media, writing, "My prayers and condolences to the families of the victims of the terrible Florida shooting. No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school."

As pointed out in various reports, Wednesday's shooting marks the 18th reported shooting that has taken place in a school this year alone, as exceeds the death toll of Columbine.

More on this story as it develops.

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