A 12-year-old boy who wounded two students with a shotgun at a New Mexico middle school took the firearm from his home, modified it and planned the attack in advance, police said yesterday, Reuters reports. The shooting lasted just 10 seconds before a teacher, identified as John Masterson, stepped forward and persuaded the boy to put down his gun. The boy will be formally charged as a juvenile, possibly today, said Roswell-based District Attorney Janetta Hicks.
In New Mexico, no one under 14 can face adult sanctions. The boy’s parents rsaid a judge has ordered the boy to undergo mental health evaluation and treatment. “We are horribly sad over this tragedy on so many levels,” they wrote in a statement quoted by local media. A boy who was shot was listed in critical condition in a Lubbock, Tx., hospital, while the girl’s condition was said to be satisfactory. Authorities did not discuss any evidence giving a motive for the attack.