Serbia school shooting: Boy, 14, arrested after shooting dead 8 children and security guard in Belgrade school
A teenage boy, 14, has been arrested after he opened fire on his teacher and classmates in a classroom in Belgrade, Serbia. Eight children and a security guard have been killed with other children and a teacher also injured in the attack.
The shooting began at about 8am local time at the Vladislav Ribnikar elementary school in the Serbian capital, with police saying that the seventh-grade student used his father’s gun for the attack.
The suspect’s classmates have said he walked into their history class and first shot the teacher before turning the gun on the students. It’s also alleged that he shot at least one security guard who tried to prevent him from entering the school.
The mayor of the central Vracar district, where the school is located, Milan Nedeljkovic said that the teacher is fighting for their life after being shot. There are also six children from the class being treated for their injuries.
Officers in helmets and bulletproof vests arrived at the school at around 8.40am local time and cordoned off the area. The suspect was then arrested with local media showing him being led from the school in handcuffs and his face covered by a jacket.
Police have identified the teenager by his initials KK and said that he was arrested in the schoolyard. Reports from Serbia have said that terrified parents have been arriving at the school in desperate attempts to find their children.
Serbian officials have conducted a press conference with Education Minister Branko Ružić saying that a student from the seventh grade “committed this bestial act.. the first in Serbia". He also said that they are “grateful to the bravery of the teachers and all those in the school who tried to stop this tragedy.”
The Education Minister asked people to pray for the victims before saying that psychologists are available to support those affected by the incident. He also said that it is: “unthinkable, how, when you see the scene of the incident, what the children have been through”.
Branko Ružić has said that the country will enter a three-day morning period from Friday May 5 to Monday May 7. He also said that school will be suspended for the rest of today, with tomorrow’s school day starting with a minute of silence.
The Education Minister also said that Serbia is “sadly in this part of the world where things like these are happening more often.” before adding that there is “evidently a cancer - the influence of the internet, video games, western values” as he called for “short term solutions and systemic change”.
Health Minister Danica Grujičić was close to tears as she confirmed that eight children and a “man who was just doing his job” have died. She also shared that two boys are in hospital in a stable condition with a third girl in critical condition with a serious head injury.
Danica Grujičić said that for the girl “there’s been an operation and all that can be done [has been] but they’re still fighting for her life”. The Health Minister also confirmed that there are a further three children in a different hospital, including a girl with a stomach injury who is in a stable condition.
A police spokesperson also attended the press conference, where he confirmed that seven girls were killed with four further boys and two girls injured. He also confirmed that the children ranged in age between 14 and 12-years-old.
The policeman also shared that the headteacher made the call to the police to say that a child had entered the school with a weapon and had begun shooting. The police officer shared that police were immediately deployed to the scene.
Police in Serbia have since arrested the father of the 14-year-old suspect of the shooting. They have said that they found two pistols on the suspect which both had legal permits.
Interior Minister Bratislav Gašic has said that the boy, who was a student at the school had “managed to get hold of those two guns and three magazines full of 15 bullets each.” He has also said that “legal measures will be taken against the father”.