Shooting at San Bernardino Elementary School

Three people were killed Monday in a shooting at North Park Elementary in San Bernardino, California. 

Image via latimes.com 

One of the victims, Karen Elaine Smith was an instructor of a special needs class at the elementary school. The shooter, Cedric Anderson, was Smith’s husband and shot himself after shooting his wife.  According to San Bernardino police, Anderson was carrying a handgun, but it was concealed when he entered the school and checked in with the front office shortly before 10:30 AM. In addition to the two adult victims, two children were shot. Police believe that the children were not targeted, but were standing near Smith when she was shot. One of the children died Monday evening, and the other is still in critical condition at an area hospital. 

The other six-hundred students at the elementary school were bussed to California State University’s San Bernardino campus for a head count and were then taken to an area high school were parents could pick up their children so long as they had a valid form of identification. 

It is possible that this event points to a larger social issue of gun violence. As reported by The Washington Post and the pro-gun-control group, Everytown for Gun Safety, this shooting is the 12th school shooting of 2017 and the second school shooting within one week. 

However, it is also possible that the group’s consideration of what constitutes a school shooting is loose enough to allow for more events to be classified as such. They include all shootings at colleges, universities, high schools and elementary schools, as well as accidental discharges and shots not fired at another person (like accidental shots through the floor, accidental firings in cars, and accidentally firing into someone’s own leg). For example, on April 7th, a student was shot after another student accidentally fired a handgun through the wall of a dorm room. This event fit Everytown’s classification of a school shooting. 

While considered the 12th school shooting of 2017 by the pro-gun-control group, this most recent school shooting in San Bernardino is the first this year in which a person was shot and killed on school property by another person. 

San Bernardino community members are shaken up in wake of the school shooting, as they are still recovering from a terrorist attack that occurred at a community center in December of 2015. 

As of Monday night, President Trump had not responded to the shooting via Twitter.