A 16-year-old gunman walked into Taft Union High School in Bakersfield yesterday morning armed with a shotgun planning to shoot two students on a hit list.
One victim remains in critical condition.
Teacher Ryan Heber helped a number of students get to safety before engaging the shooter in conversation along with campus supervisor Kim Lee Fields.
“They talked him into putting that shotgun down,” explained Sheriff Donny Youngblood. “He in fact told the teacher, ‘I don’t want to shoot you’.”
“The heroics of these two people goes without saying. … They could have just as easily … tried to get out of the classroom and left students, and they didn’t. They knew not to let him leave the classroom with that shotgun.” Police believe the suspect, who was arrested at the scene, took a shotgun belonging to his brother to carry out the attack. The suspect alleges the two students he targeted had bullied him for more than a year.