The shooting of four high-school students outside the Excelsior's June Jordan School for Equity on October 18 shocked students and faculty alike. An arrest of two individuals believed to be involved was announced shortly thereafter, and we learn today via CBS 5 that one of the two suspects, a 17-year-old, has been charged with attempted murder.
According to the District Attorney, the teenager is the only person so far who has been charged in the case, although as of last week police believed four people to have been involved. The second individual who was arrested has not been charged. Students were struck by gunfire, both BB's and bullets from a handgun, as they stood outside in the parking lot after school. One student was critically injured, and officials today report that while her condition has been upgraded to "serious," it is still life-threatening.
Little information has been released about the two individuals arrested, and it is unknown at this time if they are students at June Jordan. The Examiner reported shortly after the incident that a specific student appeared to have been targeted.
In addition to the obvious tragedy, the Examiner reports that the attack has brought to light the fact that there is no requirement for San Francisco Unified School District staff to receive active-shooter training from police. "This needs to be like a fire drill where kids know what to do,” retired San Francisco police lieutenant Colleen Fatooh, who has worked with schools in the past, told the paper. “We’ve done ‘run, hide and fight’ with a couple of schools, but as far as going out and having like a schedule, as far as the comprehensive piece, I don’t think that’s happened.”
This lack of staff training was perhaps exemplified by the faculty's response to police officers when they arrived at the school. As per protocol, officers reportedly began going through the school, with guns drawn, to check for an active shooter. School staff, perhaps unaware of this protocol, assured them that the culprits were outside of the school. “Knowing that there was no active shooter on campus, our staff asked officers to lower their weapons,” June Jordan Principal Matt Alexander said in a statement picked up by the paper. “SFPD continued to follow their active shooter protocol to ensure the safety of the students.”
Officials, both with the SFPD and SFUSD, hope to soon be on the same page. Regardless, SFPD spokesperson Officer Carlos Manfredi said officers are going to do their job should the worst happen. “It’s important that the public and the parents understand that when the officers are responding to a school shooting, those officers have a job to do,” he told the Ex. “If anybody gets in the way then that officer has every right to arrest that teacher or that person or that student.”