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17 Dead in Florida School Shooting

Students were led out of a Florida high school after a reported shooting. Students were led out of a Florida high school after a reported shooting. |  Photo: WPLG-TV via ABC

Updated: February 14, 2018 05:45 PM

PARKLAND, Fla.  - A sheriff says 17 people have died in the shooting attack on a South Florida high school.

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Sheriff Scott Israel of Broward County says the 19-year-old suspect is in custody and that investigators are beginning to "dissect" what happened in the attack Wednesday at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

He says the suspect, a former student, was previously expelled for disciplinary reasons.

Israel says the man had at least one rifle and multiple magazines.

He says most of the fatalities were inside the building though some were found fatally shot outside.

"There are numerous fatalities. It is a horrific situation," said Superintendent Robert Runcie.

"It is a horrible day for us," Runcie said.

Runcie said the teen was arrested without incident after he was located off the school grounds in a nearby community. He didn't give details of when the suspect had attended the school.

"I don't know why he left," Israel said, briefing reporters Wednesday afternoon.

The sheriff says several SWAT teams cleared every building at the Parkland high school complex to ensure no other threat remains.

He also says the FBI has stepped in and will begin processing what he describes as "horrific scene."

Said the sheriff: "This is a terrible day ... This is catastrophic."

Len Murray's 17-year-old son, a junior at the South Florida high school where shooting was reported, sent his parents a chilling text: "Mom and Dad, there have been shots fired on campus at school. There are police sirens outside. I'm in the auditorium and the doors are locked."

Those words came at 2:30 p.m. Wednesday. A few minutes later, he texted again: "I'm fine."

Murray raced to the school only to be stopped by authorities under a highway overpass within view of the school buildings in Parkland.

No information was immediately given to parents, Len Murray says. And he says he remained worried for all those inside.

"I'm scared for the other parents here. You can see the concern in everybody's faces. Everybody is asking, 'Have you hard from your child yet?'"

 

The Associated Press contributed to this report.


Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.

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