The two suspects in aTuesday outside a Minnesota school were identified by police on Wednesday as 18- and 19-year-old students. A 15-year-old student was killed in the shooting, and a 17-year-old student remains hospitalized in critical condition.
Richfield Police Chief Jay Henthorne said Fernando Valdez-Alvarez, 18, and Alfredo Rosario Solis, 19, have been taken into custody in connection with the shooting. Henthorne said he expects charges to be filed on Thursday, and said he believes there is no longer any threat to the public.
The shooting, which took place outside Richfield’s South Education Center just after noon on Tuesday, occurred after an “altercation” between a group of five students who knew each other, Henthorne said. He said that a “handgun was produced” and two students were shot.
The 15-year-old student died from his injuries on Tuesday, and the 17-year-old is still hospitalized, Henthorne said. A 19-year-old was treated for minor injuries at the scene.
Valdez-Alvarez and Solis fled in a vehicle after the shooting, Henthorne said, but were both apprehended after 6 p.m. when law enforcement officials carried out two separate search warrants.
Officials have not named the deceased or injured students, but Richfield Mayor Maria Regan Gonzalez described the 15-year-old as a “respected” member of the community who liked to play football and spend time with his friends.
“He should have had a lifetime of joy and happiness and growth in front of him,” Gonzalez said.
Superintendent Sandra Lewandowski said the school “tentatively” plans to allow students to return on Friday, and will provide “robust” mental health services.
“The days ahead will be some of the most difficult we’ve experienced,” she said, adding, “I am devastated. We are all devastated.”