A gunman wielding a rifle shot and killed a student at Reynolds High School in Troutdale, Ore., on Tuesday morning, creating a frantic scene outside the suburban high school as police rushed to the area and students and staff were evacuated.
Hoffman’s parents are “devastated,” Troutdale police chief Scott Anderson said during a briefing with reporters. “Obviously, the family has a difficult road ahead of them.”
The gunman also injured Todd Rispler, a teacher at Reynolds as well as a former star athlete at the school. Despite this injury, Rispler made his way to the school’s office and started the lockdown, Anderson said.
After the shooting, Anderson said that the gunman was found dead in a bathroom. A police spokesman told the Associated Press that the gunman likely took his own life.
Authorities have identified the gunman, Anderson said, but they are not releasing his name or age yet. In addition, officials have not confirmed any relationship between the shooter and the school.
“This is a very tragic day,” said Linda Florence, superintendent of the Reynolds School District.
During the evacuation, a gun was found on another person at the school. This is not believed to be associated with the shooting, police said. That unidentified person was taken into custody.
“This shouldn’t happen in Troutdale,” Max Maydew, grandfather to two Reynolds students, told the Oregonian. “You don’t expect something like that to happen in your hometown.”
This shooting comes less than a week after a shooting on the campus of a small university in Seattle. And it occurred two days after a shooting in Las Vegas that saw two police officers and a bystander killed in a restaurant and a Wal-Mart.
President Obama said Tuesday that that the “biggest frustration” of his presidency so far is the fact that the country hasn’t taken steps to keep guns out of the hands of mass shooters.
“We’re the only developed country on Earth where this happens,” Obama said during a question-and-answer session organized through Tumblr. “And it happens now once a week. And it’s a one-day story. There’s no place else like this.”
Obama said he remains stunned that Congress failed to pass any new gun laws in the wake of the Newtown shooting.
“This is becoming the norm,” he said. “And we take it for granted in ways that, as a parent, are terrifying to me.”
The shooting occurred on the second-to-last day of school for Reynolds High School.
“Today Oregon hurts as we try to make sense of a senseless act of violence,” Oregon Gov. John Kitzhaber (D) said in a statement.
We will update this story as more information becomes available. First published: 12:09 p.m. Last updated: 10:38 p.m.