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‘The day I was miserably forced to grow up’: Student shot, injured at Freeman High School shares affect of shooting ahead of sentencing

June 17, 2022 Updated Sat., June 18, 2022 at 2:16 p.m.

Rachelle Barton placed five red roses on Sept. 14, 2017, at the memorial for the shooting victims at Freeman High School.  (DAN PELLE)
Rachelle Barton placed five red roses on Sept. 14, 2017, at the memorial for the shooting victims at Freeman High School. (DAN PELLE)

In an ambulance speeding away from Freeman High School on Sept. 13, 2017, Liz Goldsmith asked her daughter if she knew who shot her.

“Yes, mom, I saw it all,” Jordyn Goldsmith replied. Her mother recounted the frightening moments in Spokane County Superior Court on Friday during her victim impact statement.

“Who did this?” Liz Goldsmith replied.

“Caleb Sharpe,” Jordyn Goldsmith told her. “He’s a nice boy, Mom.”

Full of emotion Friday morning, Liz Goldsmith turned to Sharpe in the courtroom.

“Caleb, do you hear how Jordyn described you after you shot her?”

On Friday, the Goldsmith family shared how the shooting at Freeman High School nearly five years ago continues to affect them ahead of Sharpe’s sentencing in August.

She would have been his friend, Jordyn Goldsmith told Sharpe on Friday.

Jordyn Goldsmith was shot three times, leaving her with two broken arms and ongoing health issues.

The day of the shooting was the day the teenager “was miserably forced to grow up,” she told the court.

It was the third week of high school for Jordyn Goldsmith, who got to sleep in that morning ahead of a late start. She climbed the stairs to her locker and was chatting with friends when she heard a loud noise, she said.

“As I turned to look, I saw a student fall to his knees,” she said.

The student was Sam Strahan, who died after being shot by Sharpe. Two other girls, Emma Nees and Gracie Jensen were both shot once.

“I froze after seeing bullet after bullet come out of that pistol,” she said.

Once able to move, Jordyn Goldsmith ran toward a nearby classroom where she was yanked inside by a classmate. Once on the ground, she moved her arm and a bullet fell out of her sweatshirt, she said.

“A pool of my own blood began forming around me,” Jordyn Goldsmith said.

The shooting has changed the young adult’s outlook on life. Before the shooting, she wanted to have children. Now she’s not so sure.

“Why would I want to have kids if they could be taken from me in an instant,” she said.

The shooting and her injuries continue to affect Goldsmith everyday. She asked that Sharpe be sentenced to life in prison by Judge Michael Price.

Travis Goldsmith, Jordyn’s father, told the court he can’t even put the impact of the shooting on their family into words.

“It was truly a parent’s worst nightmare,” he said of getting the call his daughter had been shot.

As he sped from Liberty Lake to Freeman, Travis Goldsmith wasn’t sure if his daughter was even alive. He arrived just in time to climb into the ambulance with his wife and daughter.

Now, Travis Goldsmith continues to have anxiety, nightmares and chest pain tied to fears about his family’s safety.

He addressed upcoming testimony from experts hired by both the defense and the prosecution about Sharpe’s mental status and not yet fully matured brain at the time of the shooting.

He said that everyone in the school had a juvenile brain but none of them chose to plan and carry out a school shooting.

“He should rot in jail and rot in hell,” Travis Goldsmith said.

School shootings have become common, he said. Holding Sharpe accountable to the fullest extent of the law could be a deterrent to other young men planning similar crimes, he said.

His wife agreed, mentioning the Uvalde shooting last month by name.

Liz Goldsmith asked Price to sentenced Sharpe to 45 years to life in prison.

Sharpe is set to be sentenced in August following his guilty plea in January.

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