A police officer was injured and one person was killed Monday afternoon in a mass shooting at a high school in Knoxville, police said.
The Knoxville Police Department said officers responded to reports of a male suspect, possibly armed, at the school around 3:15 p.m.
“Upon approach of the subject, shots were fired,” KPD wrote on Facebook. “A KPD officer was struck at least one time and transported to the UT Medical Center with injuries that are not expected to be life-threatening.”
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Police said one male was pronounced deceased at the scene, while another was detained for further investigation. There are no other known gunshot victims.
Multiple agencies are at the scene of the shooting in Austin-East Magnet High School, according to police.
.@ATFNashville Special Agents are responding to a shooting incident at Austin-East High School in Knoxville, TN to assist our law enforcement partners. Please direct all inquiries to @Knoxville_PD pic.twitter.com/hV1ngIxBLy
— ATF Nashville (@ATFNashville) April 12, 2021
Special Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) said it was assisting the Knoxville Police Department.
The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said earlier that agents have gone to the school. The bureau, which is the state’s top crime-fighting agency, didn’t elaborate but said it would provide more information later.
Police later said a reunification site had been established at the baseball field behind the high school near Wilson and S. Hembree.
Multiple agencies are on the scene of a shooting at Austin-East Magnet High School. Multiple gunshot victims reported, including a KPD officer. The investigation remains active at this time. Please avoid the area. pic.twitter.com/ViQirnQSpx
— Knoxville Police TN (@Knoxville_PD) April 12, 2021
Bob Thomas, the superintendent of Knox County Schools, tweeted later Monday that a shooting had occurred but the building had been secured and students who were not involved have been released to their families.
Police urged people to avoid the area. Details remained sketchy and news outlets showed numerous police and emergency vehicles at the scene.
As details continue to emerge, our thoughts are with Austin East Magnet High School and those school community members who have been affected by the shooting that took place this afternoon. The department stands ready to support.
— TN Dept of Education (@TNedu) April 12, 2021
“As details continue to emerge, our thoughts are with Austin East Magnet High School and those school community members who have been affected by the shooting that took place this afternoon,” the Tennessee Department of Education tweeted. “The department stands ready to support.
Sen. Marsha Blackburn, R-Tenn., said she was “heartbroken” to have heard about Monday’s shooting, saying that her office has been briefed and she is “praying for the community, including the officer injured in the line of duty.”
The school was the subject of media reports in February after three students were shot to death over a three-week span. Those earlier shootings did not take place in the school, and administrators at the time said students felt the arts magnet school was a safe space, according to a story in the Knoxville News Sentinel.
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