Teacher Stops Taft School Shooting, Gunman Went After Bullies

The 16-year-old victim of the shooting was injured in the upper right chest

By Raluca Anghel on January 11th, 2013 13:38 GMT

New details are emerging in the case of the California shooting at Taft high-school, which we covered earlier today.

A 16-year-old student showed up at school with a 12-gauge shotgun at 9:30 in the morning, shooting a fellow student. He had called out to the victim before going through with it, reports say. He also tried to hit a second boy, but missed him, NY Daily News reports.

Authorities are ruling the incident bullying-related. They assessed that the young shooter believed he was being bullied by the 2 boys, and came over to enact his revenge.

“Certainly he believed that the two people he had targeted had bullied him,” Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood has stated during a news conference.

A teacher who media outlets are now dubbing “heroic” managed to put an end to the situation, by talking the unnamed shooter into surrendering his weapon.

The 16-year-old victim had to be transported with a medical helicopter to a facility in Bakersfield, for treatment. According to Kern County Deputy Ryan Dunbier, he was shot in the upper right chest.

Teacher Ryan Heber saved the day by talking the shooter into giving up the gun. He was helped by a campus supervisor, who distracted the teen. Kim Lee Fields ran into the room, demanding he put down the weapon.

“They talked him into putting that shotgun down. He in fact told the teacher ‘I don’t want to shoot you,’” Youngblood describes.

Heber himself incurred a flesh wound to his head, but required no hospitalization.

“The heroics of these two people (the teacher and campus supervisor) 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,” he adds.
Teacher Ryan Heber saved the day at Taft high-school, in California
   Teacher Ryan Heber saved the day at Taft high-school, in California
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