By Calvin Palmer
A student shot himself in the head at a middle school in Louisiana today after he pointed a gun at a teacher and fired over he head.
Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre said the 15-year-old student fired one shot inside a classroom at Larose-Cut Off Middle School and then went into a bathroom and shot himself.
The boy was in a critical but stable condition at Lady of the Sea Hospital, in nearby Galliano, with a gunshot wound to the head, Sgt. Lesley Hill-Peters of the Lafourche Parish Sheriff’s Office said.
The teen walked to the front of the room and pointed what deputies believe was a .25-caliber chrome pistol at the whiteboard, Hill-Peters said. He tried to fire at the board, but it wouldn’t go off. He then stepped forward, pointed the gun at the teacher, raised it and fired a single shot over her head.
The student’s name has not been released.
The school was placed under lockdown shortly after the incident, which is believed to have occurred shortly after 9:00 a.m. Students were evacuated room by room to a nearby VFW hall.
Webre said there’s no indication the boy was in trouble with the school or the law. He had no reason to be in the classroom.
“I believe he had a cousin who was a student in the class,” Webre said. “Other than the fact that they are cousins and from the same small community, we have not drawn any other conclusions.”
Several other students described him as a quiet youth who never talked about guns or violence. He was a year or two older than most of his classmates.
Coley Gaspard, 14, said he was in his seventh-grade English and reading class when the boy came in just before 9:00 a.m. The teen yelled for everyone to get down, cursing at the class. Nobody moved.
Gaspard knew the boy, whom he described as quiet and nice, and thought it was a dramatic enactment for some sort of lesson. Then the boy walked over and pointed the gun at the teacher, ordering her to say “Hail Marilyn Manson,” Gaspard said.
She said nothing. He fired into the wall and told another boy to get up. The seventh-grader stayed in his seat, and the teen left.
Hill-Peters, the spokeswoman, said she could neither confirm nor deny that account.