NewsCovering America

Actions

Court documents reveal new details about recent Kansas high school shooting

APTOPIX School Shooting Kansas
Posted at 1:25 PM, Mar 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-16 16:25:44-04

Newly obtained court documents reveal additional details about a school shooting in Kansas just outside of Kansas City at the Olathe East High School.

18-year-old Jaylon D. Elmore, a student at Olathe East High, was charged with one count of attempted capital murder in connection to the shooting incident at the high school.

The court documents said that around 10:38 a.m. on March 4, police officers responded to the school after School Resource Officer Erik Clark called "shots fired."

"Dispatch initially became aware of the call from a 911 call from the school saying there was an unknown issue at the school," the document said. "SRO Clark was then able to get on the radio and said 'I've been shot.'"

Reports also came into dispatch that both Clark and an assistant principal had been shot.

Multiple local and federal law enforcement agencies responded to the school, and officers found three subjects with gunshot wounds in the office area. They were Clark, Assistant Principal Kaleb Stoppel and Elmore.

All three of them were transported to an area hospital by ambulance.

According to court documents, Stoppel said in an interview with investigators that he was told by a counselor that a student told her that "a kid named Jay" had brought a gun to school.

Administrators initially pulled a student they thought matched the description and searched him, but later realized they had the wrong student.

Administrators then talked to another student who said the rumor was that Elmore brings a gun to school.

Stoppel and Assistant Principal Leslie Simons went to find Elmore, who was in shop class, and escorted him to the office.

"They told Elmore someone reported someone on the bus had a gun and they were searching everyone involved," the document said. "Elmore was wearing a string backpack on his back and became defensive and did not want to cooperate. He switched his bag from his back to his front."

Stoppel then texted Clark to come to his office immediately.

After Clark arrived at the office, Elmore allegedly reached into the string backpack and pulled out a gun, allegedly firing about five rounds.

"At some point, Stoppel tried to grab the gun from Elmore and they both ended up on the floor," the document said. "Stoppel ended up on top of Elmore..."

When Stoppel got off of Elmore, he noticed that Clark had appeared to have been shot, and Stoppel later realized he had also been shot.

A preliminary statement was taken from Clark who said he had been asked to come to Stoppel's office after a student reported that Elmore may have had a pistol in his bag.

Elmore was in the office area and Stoppel asked him if he could search his bag.

After Elmore allegedly refused to let Stoppel search the bag, Clark went in to intervene and search the bag himself. Elmore then reached into the bag and pulled out a pistol and allegedly started firing at Clark.

"Fearing for his safety, SRO Clark said he drew his pistol and shot Elmore in order to defend himself," the document said. "SRO Clark was dressed in full uniform and clearly identified as a certified Olathe Police Officer at the time the events, in this case, took place."

Investigators then spoke to Simons, who stated that she had overheard a conversation the day before on a school bus about a student named "Jay" who "always brings a gun to school."

"The male students claimed Jay has pulled the gun out at school in front of them in the past," the document said.

A school counselor was then told this information, who then told Stoppel.

Simons was in the office when the incident occurred and saw Stoppel and Elmore fall to the floor.

According to Simons, Clark gave her and Stoppel instructions on how to give first aid to Elmore, after applying a tourniquet to one of his wounds.

Olathe East Principal Kerry Lane told investigators that she was aware that two assistant principals were trying to figure out if a gun had been brought to school, and she heard gunshots and smelled smoke.

"She went out into the office and saw Stoppel's door open," the document said. "SRO Clark came out of the office. Haw was radioing for help. She went into the office and saw Stoppel on top of Elmore. She confirmed the gun was secured with SRO Clark. She left and began locking down the school."

Officers located Elmore's gun in Stoppel's office, and it was a 9mm "ghost gun."

In Stoppel's office, officers also found Elmore's phone. At 12:54 p.m., a text message on the phone read "I TOLD YOU NOT TO EVEN HAVE THAT GUN ON YOU."

As of Tuesday, March 15, Elmore was reportedly still in critical condition at an area hospital.

A court hearing on Elmore's charge is scheduled for Thursday, March 17.

This story was originally published by KSHB in Kansas City, Kansas.