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Three children, three adults killed in Nashville primary school shooting

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Three children, three adults killed in Nashville primary school shooting

Three children and three adults have been killed after a woman opened fire at a primary school in Nashville, Tennessee, local officials said, in the latest instance of deadly gun violence in the United States.

The shooting occurred on Monday morning at The Covenant School, a private Presbyterian school with a student body of about 200 that teaches preschool through sixth grade.

According to officials, the three children, all nine years old, had gunshot wounds and they were pronounced dead upon arrival at the Monroe Carell Jr Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. The adult victims were all over 60, their roles at the school were not immediately clear.

The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said on Monday afternoon that the suspect, a 28-year-old Nashville resident they identified as Audrey Hale, had been fatally shot by officers after they entered the building.

According to the police, Hale had an assault rifle, handgun, as well as a pistol and entered the building by shooting through a door. Hale also had detailed maps of the school and left behind a “manifesto”.

Hale was believed to be a former student at the school. Police chief John Drake also told reporters that Hale “does identify as transgender”.

The attack took place at a “lobby type area” in the school and not in a classroom, a police official said.

Students could be seen being walked to safety after the incident, holding hands as they left school surrounded by police cars. They were brought to a nearby church to be reunited with their parents.

Helicopter footage from the WTVF local news station showed police officers looking around a wooded area between the campus and a nearby road.

Jozen Reodica said she heard police sirens and fire trucks blaring from outside her office building nearby. As the building was placed under lockdown, she took out her phone and recorded the chaos.

“I thought I would just see this on TV,” she told The Associated Press news agency. “And right now, it’s real.”

Nashville Mayor, John Cooper expressed sympathy for the victims, writing on social media that his city “joined the dreaded, long list of communities to experience a school shooting”.

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