Police: 2 students shot, killed at a high school in New Mexico
The police confirm the shooter is also dead; no word yet if the suspect was a student at Aztec high School.
A 21-year-old disguised himself as a student, before he walked into a New Mexico high school on Dec. 7 and opened fire, according to reports.
William Atchison ran in the Aztec high School bathroom to prepare for the attack, the Associated Press reported Friday. He was interrupted by a male student — who he shot and killed. The police said Atchison fatally shot another student in the hallway as he fired his gun before he turned it on himself.
Atchison, was reportedly known to the police, but he had no criminal record. He also bought his gun legally, authorities said.
Here is what we know about the Atchison, and the shoot so far.
Who was the shooter?
Atchison, was a former student at the small town of Aztec high School.
Authorities say that the shooter does not have a criminal record. The only contact with the police was what they described as a general message on an online gaming forum in 2016, which he talked about what weapons can be used in a mass shooting.
The FBI said that the posting was flagged and researchers were talking with the gunman at his home in Aztec, where he lived with his parents. At the time, that he is allegedly not in possession of weapons, other than a airsoft pellet gun and said he had no plans for an attack, and just liked to troll sites online.
Who were the victims?
Casey J. Marquez and Francisco I. Fernandez, were the two victims of the shooting.
Marquez was a cheerleader and was planning to take part in the upcoming Orange Bowl. Her classmates said she came across as a student leader.
Bryn Divine, a senior at Aztec high School, remembered Marquez a vibrant and friendly student who often won dance competitions at school events.
“She burns almost every room we were all in,” Divine said. “She was such a fun person to be around.”
Fernandez was known for his fast typing and an interest in computers. His family said that he has a bright future ahead of him.
According to a KOB4, a local news station, Fernandez was a recent transfer to Aztec high School. He took part in sports and wanted to study.
His father: “never saw this coming,” KOB4 reported.
What was the shooter’s motive?
The police said the two victims were not specific targets.
Atchison left a stick on his body, which apparently contained a note that detailed his plan for Thursday morning.
“If everything goes according to plan, today would be when I die,” Atchison the note begins.
In his note, he said that he was planning to “gear up” for holding a classroom hostage. He said that he would eventually commit suicide.
“Work sucks, school sucks, life sucks,” he said in his note. “I just want this s—.”
The Associated Press contributed to this report.