No students were injured when a former student at a charter school in southwest Houston opened fire inside the building on Friday morning, injuring a school employee, before heading to the police, according to the authorities.
The shooting took place around 11:45 a.m. Friday at YES Prep Southwest Secondary, a charter school serving students in grades 6 to 12.
Houston Police Chief Troy Finner said Friday afternoon a man approached the charter school armed with a rifle and shot through the glass doors to enter the building.
Once inside, the man shot an employee, hitting the unidentified person in the back, Finner said.
The chief said the gunman, who was in the school when Houston police arrived minutes later, surrendered without incident when approached by officers.
No students were injured in the shooting, the school said in a statement on Facebook.
Houston Fire Department firefighters provided first aid and transported the victim to a nearby hospital. At the last check-up, the victim was listed in serious condition.
KPRC-TV in Houston reported that a school administrator was taken to an area hospital. During interviews on KPRC, several students identified the victim as the principal, but this information was not confirmed by the police.
The motive for the shooting has not been revealed and it is not yet clear whether the employee who was shot was targeted or whether the shooting was random.
The gunman, who Finner identified only as a 25-year-old black man, was quickly identified by school officials as a former student of the school.
Houston Police searched the school and confirmed there were no other injured people in the building and found no evidence that the shooter had an accomplice.
A line of masked students walked out of the school just before 1 p.m., raising their hands to show officers they were not carrying a weapon. Several students told reporters they saw blood as they left the building.
“You don’t want something like that to happen,” Finner said, “but I want to congratulate these students. All the students that I saw come out, they were calm. The administrators, the teachers, amazing work. I want to congratulate them … they are training for this. “
NBC 5 and Associated Press.