Published On: Sat, Feb 3rd, 2018

LA School Shooting: Unclear Where 12-Year-Old Got Gun

The semi-automatic handgun that fired accidentally inside a Los Angeles middle school classroom came from a 12-year-old girl’s backpack and the single bullet tore through the wrist of another girl before striking a boy’s head, police said Friday.

LA School Shooting

Los Angeles Police spokesman Josh Rubenstein said detectives are trying to figure out where the girl got the gun, which was unregistered, and why she brought it to school. It wasn’t clear what made it fire.

The girl, who was booked on a charge of negligent discharge of a firearm after Thursday’s shooting, has retained an attorney and isn’t answering questions, Rubenstein said.

“She was crying,” Jordan said. “She was like, ‘I didn’t mean to. I had the gun in my backpack and I didn’t know it was loaded and my backpack fell and the gun went off.'”

Jordan said he saw a hole in the backpack, which the girl was holding, when she asked him to hide the gun for her.

“I said ‘No,'” he said. “Then I moved away from her because I was a little bit scared.”

The shooting sent children screaming and crying from the classroom as blood poured from the two students who were hit. Police descended on the school, which was put on lockdown, and the girl was arrested without incident.

The 15-year-old boy who was hit in the head with a bullet and initially was in critical condition.

A spokesman at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center where the children were being treated didn’t respond to messages about his condition Friday, though a doctor treating the boy said he expected him to make a full recovery.

The wrist wound to the 15-year-old girl was considered minor. Three others had superficial face or head injuries, some from broken glass.

A review of shootings nationwide by The Associated Press and USA TODAY Network found that at least 141 deaths of minors were attributed to unintentional or accidental shootings in 2015.

Most accidental shootings involve someone actually handling firearms, as opposed to guns getting dropped, said Pete Gagliardi, a former longtime agent with the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms.

“It’s pretty rare to hear about an incident like this,” Gagliardi said of Thursday’s shooting.

The boy was charged with bringing a gun to a school zone. A spokesman for the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office didn’t immediately respond to a request about the outcome of his case.

The Los Angeles Unified School District has a policy requiring every middle and high school campus to conduct daily random searches by metal-detector wands at different hours of the school day for students in the sixth grade and up.