A Texas student opened fire during a fight at his high school Wednesday morning, leaving four people injured, and later surrendered following a manhunt, police said.
The shooting left panicked students at Timberview High School in Arlington scrambling and barricading in their classrooms.
Timothy George Simpkins, 18, was arrested on three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, Assistant Police Chief Kevin Kolbye said.
“This is not a random act of violence. This is not somebody attacking our schools,” Kolbye said at a press conference.
“This was a student, they got into a fight, and drew a weapon,” he added.
Police said Simpkins pulled out a weapon after getting into an altercation around 9:15 a.m. local time on the second floor of the school.
Three of the victims were rushed to the hospital for treatment, at least two of them for gunshot wounds. Among them was Calvin Pettitt, a 25-year-old English teacher who suffered broken ribs and a collapsed lung, according to his family.
“He got shot in the back, and they said he’s really lucky because it barely missed his aorta,” his sister wrote on Twitter.
“He’ll be in the hospital for a few days but he’s going to be fine,” she added.
A 15-year-old boy underwent surgery for his injuries and was in critical condition, police said.
Another hospitalized victim, a teenage girl, was in good condition and expected to be discharged, police said. She was grazed by a bullet and suffered a small abrasion.
The fourth victim, a pregnant district employee, fell during the shooting, NBC-DFW reported. She received medical attention at the scene and declined further treatment.
Police said that school resource officers responded “within minutes” to the shooting.
“When police officers heard over the radio that there was a teacher that was in distress, the police officers immediately went to that classroom,” Kolbye said. “And I can tell you that one police officer heard the shots, as he was going up there, so I can tell you that they were on the scene quickly responding to this incident and trying to render aid to those that were injured.”
The 1,900-student school, part of the Mansfield Independent School District, was placed on lockdown until authorities gave the “all clear” around 11 a.m. local time.
Dale Topham, a visiting early college history teacher, said that he heard “crashing noises” coming from across the hall while teaching his students a lesson on the Revolutionary War.
“All my students instantly recognized the sound and said ‘gunshots,’ turned off the lights, and hid behind desks,” Topham told The Post.”We hunkered down and waited for what felt like forever,” Topham added.
Footage posted to Twitter showed students scramble to take cover as gunshots rang out.
Simpkins fled the scene, prompting authorities to ask for the public’s help tracking him down. But within hours, he retained an attorney who drove him to the police station, where he was handcuffed in the parking lot, authorities said.
He was booked in jail on $75,000 bail and expected to appear before a judge at 6 p.m. local time Wednesday.
Around 2:30 p.m. a SWAT team descended on a home where neighbors said Simpkins lived with his grandmother, the Dallas News reported.
A .45 handgun believed to be the weapon fired by Simpkins was recovered in the middle of a Grand Prairie street, police said.
“We brought this to a very quick resolve and without incident,” said Mansfield Police Chief Tracy Aaron, whose officers also responded to the scene.
Police said they conducted a “methodical search” on campus with help from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other local agencies.
Parents were directed to a reunification center at the Center for Performing Arts to meet up with their children.
The shooting came just days after gunfire at a Houston charter school injured an administrator.
The state’s deadliest school shooting occurred in May 2018 when a then-17-year-old armed with a shotgun and pistol at Santa Fe High School fatally shot 10 people, most of whom were students.
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