TEHRAN (Tasnim) – A 19-year-old gunman returning to a Florida high school where he had once been expelled opened fire with an assault rifle on Wednesday, killing 17 people and wounding more than a dozen others before he was arrested, authorities said.
The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, a placid, middle-class community about 45 miles (72 km) north of Miami, ranked as the second-deadliest act of gun violence ever on a US public school campus.
The attack began shortly before the school’s dismissal, Reuters reported.
Television footage showed images, increasingly familiar in America, of bewildered students streaming out of the building with hands raised in the air, weaving their way between heavily armed, helmeted police officers, as a fire truck and other emergency vehicles idled nearby.
Florida’s two US senators, briefed by federal law enforcement officials, said the assailant wore a gas mask as he stalked into the school carrying a rifle, ammunition cartridges and smoke grenades, then pulled a fire alarm, prompting students and staff to pour from their classrooms into hallways.
“There the carnage began,” Senator Bill Nelson told CNN. Senator Marco Rubio gave a similar account on Twitter.
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