6‑year-old uses mother’s gun to shoot teacher in Virginia school

A 6‑year-old boy shot his teacher at a US school with a gun legal­ly pur­chased by his moth­er, police said in a statement.

At a news con­fer­ence Mon­day, Vir­ginia police said the boy had car­ried a gun in his back­pack to school.

A boy delib­er­ate­ly shot teacher Abi­gail “Abby” Zwern­er dur­ing class on Fri­day. After the teacher man­aged to evac­u­ate the stu­dent to safe­ty, he called for help him­self, police said.

Zwern­er, 25, remains in hos­pi­tal and is in a sta­ble condition.

Police in New­port News, a city of 180,000 north­west of Vir­ginia Beach, said they spoke with the teacher in the ear­ly hours of Monday.

Police Chief Steve Drew said, “She’s a cop and a hero,” adding that Zwern­er repeat­ed­ly asked if stu­dents were in the class­room at the time of the shooting.

Around 14:00 local time (19:00 Japan time), police received a call that a teacher had been shot at Rich­neck Ele­men­tary School. When I entered the class­room, a 6‑year-old stu­dent was being hugged by school staff.

Chief Drew said the boy fired one shot at the teacher. “The shoot­ing was inten­tion­al, not acci­den­tal,” he said, adding that it hap­pened while Zwern­er was teach­ing a class.

Zwern­er was hit in his hands and upper chest, Drew said. He then checked the safe­ty of the stu­dents out­side the class­room and went to the school admin­is­tra­tion office for help.

“He turned around to make sure every­one was okay,” Drew said.

When the school build­ing was locked, a woman pick­ing up her grand­son saw Mr. Zwern­er appear at the school gate.

Lowan­da Sam­ple-Rusk told the New York Times, “She said, ‘Call 911 and I’ve been shot.’ And she passed out.

Anoth­er par­ent told The Wash­ing­ton Post that the shoot­ing occurred after a teacher tried to con­fis­cate the girl’s gun.

Police said a Tau­rus 9mm pis­tol was found near a stu­den­t’s desk in the class­room, along with the stu­den­t’s back­pack, mobile phone and used cartridges.

Drew said police learned through inter­views with the boy’s moth­er that the gun was legal­ly pur­chased and kept at her home.

Police said the uniden­ti­fied boy was in cus­tody and was being eval­u­at­ed at a hos­pi­tal, adding that they planned to apply for a tem­po­rary deten­tion order.

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