HOUSTON, (Xinhua): A 12-year-old boy opened fire on two classmates at a middle school in the U.S. state of New Mexico Tuesday, leaving both injured before he dropped the shotgun and was taken into custody, local media reported.
Shots rang out Tuesday morning before school started at Berrendo Middle School in New Mexico’s southeastern city of Roswell, KOB Eyewitness News 4 reported, injuring a 12-year-old boy and 13-year-old girl in a gymnasium.
The girl was later identified as Kendal Sanders by her father on Facebook, while the second victim has not been named.
Students who witnessed the shooting later told media the suspect shot the boy twice in the face and shot the girl in the arm. The boy was in critical condition at a hospital in Lubbock, Texas, while the girl had reportedly been upgraded from critical to serious condition at the same hospital.
A school staff member also suffered minor injuries when he stopped the shooter, New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez told a press conference Tuesday afternoon.
The governor said the suspect was “quickly stopped by the staff member who walked right up to him and asked him to set down the firearm, which he did,” adding the shooting ended within seconds and did not escalate.
The school was then placed on lockdown as students were escorted to a nearby shopping mall where anxious parents picked them up.
The suspect has been taken into custody and police have reportedly searched his home. His motive for shooting the students remains unclear and authorities have not disclosed any further details.