A 6-year-old boy that shot a teacher in Newport News, Virginia, on Friday has been taken into custody. Police Chief Steve Drew said the little kid shot the teacher after an altercation at the Richneck Elementary School and that the female teacher is in her 30s. The unnamed teacher was in critical condition when taken to the hospital but is said to be responding to treatment.
Drew said the police are investigating the incident and that the commonwealth attorney has been contacted for advice on the matter. He said the boy fired a single shot at the teacher, and that it was a solitary incident that did not involve any other students or people. He added that the police are investigating the source of the firearm the boy used and how he managed to bring it to school to attempt a killing.
“The individual is a 6-year-old student,” Drew said. “He is right now in police custody. We have been in contact with our commonwealth attorney to help us best get services to this young man. This was not a situation where we had a student, or any other individuals, going up and down the halls actively firing in a long shooting incident. We’ll get the investigation done, there are questions we’ll want to ask and find out about. I want to know where that firearm came from.”
The superintendent of the Newport News Public Schools, Dr. George Parker III, condemned the incident and said the school will be closed throughout the district on Monday. He said parents and guardians should exercise extra care to ensure guns do not get into the hands of minors, and that the community must increase its vigilance over gun possession.
“I’m in shock, and I’m disheartened,” Parker said. “We need to educate our children and we need to keep them safe. We need the community’s support, continued support, to make sure that guns are not available to youth and I’m sounding like a broken record today because I continue to reiterate that: that we need to keep guns out of the hands of our young people.”
Mayor Phillip Jones also condemned the incident and disclosed that he is quite hurt by it. He said the entire community will learn from it while calling for more gun vigilance. He said the perpetrator is in first grade and that the incident ought not to have occurred in the first place. He said investigations are still ongoing to determine how the boy got the gun and how he was able to beat random metal detectors in the school.