By Alex Dobuzinskis
Jan 10 A student armed with a shotgun opened
fire at a California high school on Thursday, critically
wounding a fellow student before two adult staff members talked
the boy into giving up his weapon, and he was arrested,
The shooting comes less than four weeks after a December
rampage at a Connecticut elementary school where a gunman killed
20 children and six adults in an attack that shocked the nation
and has fueled a heated national debate over gun control.
The latest shooting unfolded Thursday morning at Taft Union
High School in the Kern County town of Taft, about 30 miles
southwest of Bakersfield and about 100 miles (161 km) north of
downtown Los Angeles
One student critically wounded by gunfire was airlifted to a
nearby hospital, Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood said.
A second student received minor injuries while falling over
a table trying the flee the classroom, and a third student was
taken to a hospital complaining of hearing loss from the sound
of a gun blast, Youngblood said.
The lone suspect, a 16-year-old male student, was arrested
after a teacher and a school administrator who confronted him
persuaded the boy to put his gun down, Youngblood told a
televised news conference.
His identity was not immediately released, but police said
the suspect apparently had a disagreement with the student who
was critically injured.
Sheriff's deputies called to the scene went room-by-room to
secure the school, and television news images showed students
lined up on the sidewalk outside the school, with parents
stopped in cars to pick them up.