Nevada

Video of officer's dramatic confrontation with knife-wielding HS student released

Officer on administrative leave in Nevada while Reno police investigate the incident

 

Newly released video showed panic at a Nevada high school after a campus police officer confronted a student wielding a large kitchen knife, before shooting the teen in the shoulder on Wednesday.

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The 14-year-old boy was in critical condition at a hospital in Reno, police said Thursday. Screams were heard among the crowd of students after the gunshot rang out and the teen, wearing a blue shirt and white pants, fell to the ground in the outdoor quad.

The teen had been "armed with at least one knife and threatening other students" during a fight at Hug High School in a working class neighborhood on the city's north side, Police Chief Jason Soto said at a news conference. He did not name the teenager.

Witness reports that the teen had stabbed another student weren't true, Officer Tim Broadway added.

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The armed student failed to heed the school police officer's commands to drop the knife, and the officer ultimately fired his service weapon, "striking the student and ... stopping the threat," the chief said.

"Once the threat was stopped, the officer immediately began to provide medical aid to the student until emergency medical assistance arrived," Soto said. He refused to take any questions.

The school was placed under lockdown and the 14-year-old was taken to Renown Regional Medical Center. The lockdown was lifted by midafternoon and students were released to their parents.

"There's some very disturbing video out there," Broadway told reporters Wednesday afternoon. "But there are other events that led up to this incident, so please don't react to those."

Broadway urged witnesses to turn video over to police before making it public. He said initial reports that another student had been stabbed before the shooting weren't true.

A student, Robert Barragan, told the Reno Gazette-Journal that two students, both boys, were fighting outside the school library before a police officer shot the knife-wielding student in the shoulder.

A regional officer-involved shooting team led by Reno police interviewed the campus officer, who was placed on routine paid administrative leave, Broadway said.

School district officials said classes would resume as scheduled on Thursday.

"Counselors will be available for any student or staff member who needs assistance," Washoe County School Superintendent Traci Davis said in a statement.

Hug High opened in 1968 and is named for Proctor Ralph Hug Jr., a former teacher, athletic coach and Washoe County School superintendent who served as a state senator and a federal judge.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.