The school scene showing students been removed
Police in Parkland, Florida, have arrested a suspect after responding to a deadly shooting at a local high school, more than an hour after the shooting began.
School superintendent Robert Runcie told reporters: “there are fatalities involved here.”
Today we experiencing the worst of humanity as an unspeakable tragedy has hit our @browardschool family at Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS. There has been a shooting on campus with injuries and fatalities. We are working with law enforcement as we pray for our babies and families.
Both Mr Runcie and the Sherriff, Scott Israel, identified the suspect as a former student of the school.
“So far we have at least 14 victims,” the Sherriff’s department said, without specifying their condition.
US media outlets reported that up to 20 people may have been injured, while some have been evacuated.
A local Fox news affiliate reported seeing several people being treated for injuries outside the school.
Meanwhile, Florida Senator Bill Nelson told Fox News there were “many deaths”, citing conversations with the school superintendent, the FBI, and the undersheriff.
The local public school district tweeted: “Today, close to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School’s dismissal, students and staff heard what sounded like gunfire.”
“The school immediately went on lockdown but is now dismissing students. We are receiving reports of possible multiple injuries,” it said.
Police were clearing students from the school “one building at a time”, the school said.
Video footage from the scene showed students being evacuated in small groups, while armed police patrolled the school’s perimeter.
As the situation unfolded, reports the BBC, helicopter footage appeared to show a person being handcuffed and placed in the back of a police car.
Coral Springs Police department tweeted instructions to teachers and students to “remain barricaded inside until police reach you”.
One student evacuated from the school told CBS that Miami students had thought it was a drill.
“We already had one earlier this morning… and then we heard gunshots; some students thought it was not that serious.”
Another student, Bailey Vosberg, said: “I heard what sounded like fireworks and I looked at my friend and he asked me if I heard that.”
“Immediately, I knew. I didn’t say anything to him, I just hopped over the fence and I went straight to the road that our school is located on – and as I got there there was just Swat cars and police units, police vehicles just flying by, helicopters over the top of us.”