A student at Albemarle High School is in police custody after he allegedly shot another student in the lower extremities Tuesday morning as class was beginning. All Albemarle Police Chief William Halliburton would reveal at a press conference shortly after the incident was that the two - he wasn't sure what grade they were in or if they were minors - had been in a brief altercation leading up to the shooting, which occurred in a courtyard in front of the school.
The suspected shooter surrendered quickly after the incident, and the victim is in a nearby hospital. His condition is unknown. As of 10 a.m. the school was still on lockdown.
"He could have done more, so the reaction is we're thankful that he gave himself up," Halliburton said.
About 20 officers from the city, county and surrounding townships responded to the incident within minutes and sent teams inside the school to look for any other active shooters.
Halliburton said multiple police forces, including his own, and the school had practiced how to respond to a large-scale active shooting with multiple victims over the summer. "I felt we were as prepared as we could be," he said of today's reaction.
He did not say when the department would release the condition of the victim or his or the suspected shooter's identity.
He said Albemarle PD will follow up this incident with community meetings to gather reactions - what went right, what went wrong - from parents and community leaders. "The community is very interested and very concerned when something like this happens. You always read about it and hear about it somewhere else, but when it happens here … I'm sure we'll get a lot of reaction."
To Halliburton's knowledge this is the first such shooting in Albemarle.