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‘Multiple gunshot victims’ after shooting at high school in Iowa

Multiple people have been injured in a shooting at a school in the US state of Iowa, police say, on students’ first day back in classes after their annual winter break...READ THE FULL STORY HERE▶

Police were called to an active shooter situation at the high school in the town of Perry, about 50 kilometres north-west of the capital of Des Moines, just before 7.40am on Thursday (10.40pm AEDT).

Dallas County Sheriff Adam Infante said there was no further danger to the public but would not comment on the number of victims or status of the shooter.

Police respond to Perry High School in Perry, Iowa, Thursday, January 4, 2024.

“Officers first arrived within seven minutes of that activation and located multiple gunshot victims,” he said at a news conference about three hours after the incident.

“We’re still unclear exactly how many are injured or what the extent of those are but we’re working on that right now.”

An enormous number of emergency vehicles surrounded the building that houses the town’s middle school and high school.

Zander Shelley, 15, was in a hallway waiting for the first day of school after break to start when he heard gunshots and dashed into a classroom, according to his father, Kevin Shelley. Zander was grazed twice and hid in the classroom before texting his father at 7.36am.

Kevin Shelley, who drives a garbage truck, told his boss he had to run.

“It was the most scared I’ve been in my entire life,” he said.

Police respond to Perry High School in Perry, Iowa, Thursday, January 4, 2024.

FBI agents from the Omaha-Des Moines office were on scene to help with the investigation led by the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation.

“There are a bunch of speculative numbers floating around,” said Dirk Cavanaugh, Perry’s mayor.

“We have no confirmed numbers of who was involved yet.”

Erica Jolliff said that her daughter, a ninth grader, reported getting rushed from the school grounds at 7.45am.

Distraught, Jolliff was still looking for her son Amir, a sixth grader, one hour later.

Police respond to Perry High School in Perry, Iowa, Thursday, January 4, 2024.

“I just want to know that he’s safe and OK,” Jolliff said.

“They won’t tell me nothing.”

The high school is part of the 1785-student Perry Community School District. The town itself has about 8000 residents

The shooting occurred in the backdrop of the Iowa caucuses and not far from where Republican candidates were campaigning.

Phone messages left with the Perry School Board’s president and vice president, and an email message left with Superintendent Clark Wicks, were not immediately returned.

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Kylian Walterlin

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