Teacher distracted shooter to let other students escape

TAFT, Calif. - Sheriff Donny Youngblood said that during a conference at 12:30 just outside of Taft High School that teachers distracted the 16-year-old shooter so that other students could escape the room.

Youngblood said that the teen told the teacher that he didn't want to shoot him and that he was wanting to shoot someone else. The teacher and a campus supervisor was able to talk to the student and persuaded him to drop the weapon.

The shooting occurred about 9 a.m. at Taft Union High School, an oil and agricultural community about 120 miles northwest of Los Angeles.

The shooting took place in the Science Building at the school.

The student who was shot was flown to a hospital in Bakersfield, said Ray Pruitt, spokesman for the Kern County Sheriff's Department. There was no immediate word on the victim's condition.

"We have a suspect in custody," Pruitt said, adding that the person was a 16-year-old shooter.

Pruitt said he believes the student used a shotgun in the attack and that weapon has been recovered.

Sheriff Donny Youngblood said that the student shot one student who is in critical condition. The shooter attempted to shoot another student but missed and struck a teacher in the head.

Youngblood said that the student took the shotgun on campus and began shooting.

The shooter had multiple rounds of 12 gauge shells on him and was taken down by the teacher who was shot.

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