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Florida shooting timeline


By Tara Woods – The Collegiate Staff

The deadliest mass shooting so far in 2018 took place on Wednesday in southern Florida.

Authorities arrested a single suspect, the 19-year-old had previously been expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

As of Thursday, 17 people are confirmed dead, with others in the hospital. This is a brief timeline of Wednesday’s events.

Wed. Feb. 14, 2018, sometime after 2 p.m.

The gunman arrived in an Uber to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. He was allegedly wearing a gas mask and carrying smoke grenades on him, along with a .223 caliber AR-15 firearm.

He allegedly pulled the fire alarm to try to get more students and faculty into the halls to increase the number of casualties.

2:30 p.m.

According to CNN, the gunfire started around 2:30 in the afternoon. Students began texting loved ones, posting on social media and taking video from inside the school.

2:53 p.m.

Broward County Sheriff Department tweets that people should stay clear of Stoneman Douglas High School as they were following up with an incident that involved an active shooter.

3:10 p.m.

A student tweets a picture of himself and other students in lockdown hiding under chairs and desks. A minute later, Broward County tweeted that the shooter was still at large.

The FBI and dozens of other police units respond to the shooting. Students are seen evacuating with their hands above their heads or on other students shoulders.

3:15 p.m.

Students can be seen running from the school with their hands up. The gunman allegedly mixed with the students and staff as they evacuated the buildings one by one.

3:36 p.m.

Broward Schools tweeted about the incident saying that there were reports of gunfire close to the students release from school and law enforcement was on site and they had received reports of “possible multiple injuries.” They also stated that school had been on lockdown but was now releasing students.

3:40 p.m.

Students were taken to a nearby hotel to reunite with their family members.

3:50 p.m.

President Trump tweets, “My prayers and condolences to the families of the victims of the terrible Florida shooting. No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school.”

3:58 p.m.

The gunman is arrested a mile from the school in a neighborhood. The arrest was captured by a local television station’s helicopter feed.

4:11 p.m.

Broward Sheriff Office confirms the arrest.

4:27 p.m.

The gunman was taken to the hospital for “labored breathing” as a precaution. A local news station photographed him being loaded into the ambulance.

Broward Sheriff Office confirms in a tweet that there have been “at least 14 victims.”

A few moments later, the Associated Press reports that there have been numerous fatalities, which was the first indication that victims had died.

4:34 p.m.

The first video of the shooter being arrested is released.

4:59 p.m.

Broward County Sheriff’s Office says that students are still inside the school and are being evacuated by SWAT. The school has around 3,100 students. A student shot a video of the SWAT team coming in and evacuating students from their hiding places.

5:30 p.m.

Local news stations began to identify the shooter. At the time they did not know the spelling of his name.

6:00 p.m.

The shooter was seen being escorted in the Broward County Sheriff’s Office wearing a hospital gown.

6:27 p.m.

Broward County Sheriff’s Office confirms the death of 17 people. They had only previously said “victims.”

The school district said it will remain closed for the rest of the week.


7:36 p.m.

Reporters and news crews were allowed to get close to the school. A local channel, WSVN, broadcasted the bullet holes in the windows.


Thurs. Feb. 15, 2018 5:39 a.m.

Local news station broadcasts the shooter getting booked into the county jail.

6:30 a.m.

The sheriff’s department publishes jail booking details for the shooter along with a mugshot. He is charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder. All counts of murder are listed under his information.

8:06 a.m.

We learned that the FBI had investigated a disturbing comment the shooter left on a video posted by Ben Bennight. Bennight reported the comment to YouTube and the FBI.

10:30 a.m.

The shooter appeared in court for a brief hearing in a heavily guarded courtroom wearing an orange jumpsuit with his hands and feet shackled. The shooter was asked whether he understood the circumstances in which he found himself, he whispered two words: “Yes, ma’am.”

11:23 a.m.

President Trump addressed the nation in wake of the shooting at a press conference.

2:07 p.m.

Reports came out saying that the shooter had ties to a white supremacist group called the “Republic of Florida.” The spokesperson said the shooter “participated in one or more ROF training exercises in the Tallahassee area, carpooling with other ROF members from south Florida.”

The Republic of Florida spokesperson told the Anti-Defamation League that the group “had not ordered or wanted the shooter to do anything like the school shooting,” according to the report.

4:45 p.m.

More information has been released about the victims.
Find out what Grand Rapids Community College student had to say about this event in this Collegiate report.