Columbine and similar events have focused national attention on preventing more tragedies. Still, guns continue to make their way into schools.
Some recent events in the Spokane area:
•On the morning of Sept. 22, 2003, Sean Fitzpatrick, then 16, took 30 over-the-counter painkillers, watched the movie “Phone Booth” and went to school with his father’s loaded 9 mm handgun. Lewis and Clark High School was evacuated when he revealed the gun and fired into a wall.
Fitzpatrick was eventually shot in the face, arm and stomach by police when he aimed his gun at them during a standoff. He survived and later wrote a letter of apology to teachers.
•On Dec. 10, 2004, a teen committed suicide by shooting himself in the head with a .38-caliber handgun at Lakeside High School in Nine Mile Falls.
•In January, a 13-year-old seventh-grade student was arrested and expelled for stashing a loaded .32-caliber handgun behind a toilet tank at Mead Middle School. The principal, acting on student tips, found the gun.
•On Feb. 4, a 15-year-old student brought a loaded .22-caliber revolver to East Valley High School and pointed it in a teacher’s face. The boy was trying to enter a classroom to talk to his former girlfriend and the teacher wouldn’t let him through the door.
•On March 24, Jacob D. Carr allegedly brought a loaded .32-caliber semiautomatic pistol to Ferris High School with the intent of shooting a teacher. The 14-year-old had been suspended at Ferris, and re-enrolled at Shadle Park High School, for sending an e-mail threatening to burn down the teacher’s house with her inside.
Carr later told police he got within 6 feet of the teacher, but didn’t go through with his plans for a murder-suicide because there were too many adults nearby.