Six teenagers have been charged with murder over an Des Moines police said.outside of an Iowa high school on Monday that killed a 15-year-old and severely wounded two other teens. The suspects, who have not been named but are in police custody, were each charged with one count of first degree murder and two counts of attempted murder,
The news comes one day after the shooting placed East High School on lockdown. Police said they responded to reports of a shooting at approximately 2:48 p.m. local time and found three victims near a parking lot: the 15-year-old male, a 16-year-old female and an 18-year-old female.
Police said Tuesday that the deceased 15-year-old was the “intended target” of the drive by shooting and the two other victims were not targeted. Both victims remain in the hospital with life-threatening injuries.
“While this incident occurred outside of a school, it could have occurred in any one of our neighborhoods,” Des Moines Police said in a statement Tuesday. “The school is where the suspects found their target. The rapid response by DMPD officers, and the swift action by the school staff placing the building in lockdown and sheltering students and staff in place, certainly had a positive impact on safety and scene management.”
Police said that within several hours of the incident, all six suspects were in police custody. During the investigation, detectives also recovered several firearms they believed were used in the shooting and executed search warrants in residences and vehicles.
East High School was given the all clear around 4:28 p.m on Monday. School was canceled on Tuesday but may continue throughout the week, and the school district has said it will provide grief counselors for students and staff.
“We live in an era when shootings in and near schools have become too common,” Superintendent Thomas Ahart said in a statement Monday. “Our staff and students are forced to train for these incidents and the trauma associated with the repeated drills and incidents will remain with them for years to come.”