News / USA

California Shooting Comes Amid National Debate on Gun Violence

Paramedics transport student wounded during shooting Jan. 10, 2013 at San Joaquin Valley high school in Taft, Calif (Taft Midway Driller/Doug Keeler)Paramedics transport student wounded during shooting Jan. 10, 2013 at San Joaquin Valley high school in Taft, Calif (Taft Midway Driller/Doug Keeler)
x
Paramedics transport student wounded during shooting Jan. 10, 2013 at San Joaquin Valley high school in Taft, Calif (Taft Midway Driller/Doug Keeler)
Paramedics transport student wounded during shooting Jan. 10, 2013 at San Joaquin Valley high school in Taft, Calif (Taft Midway Driller/Doug Keeler)
TEXT SIZE - +
Mike O'Sullivan
— A student is in critical but stable condition after a shooting at a high school in California on Thursday. The incident comes as the United States is engaged in an intense debate over gun violence.

The shooting occurred in the town of Taft, some 200 kilometers north of Los Angeles, after a 16-year-old student entered a classroom with a shotgun.

Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood explains what happened next. “He shot someone.  He tried to shoot someone else, and the teacher was trying to get the students to evacuate through the back door,” Youngblood said.

Police say that both the victim and a second student who escaped injury were intentionally targeted, and that the teacher and a campus supervisor engaged the shooter in conversation, allowing more than two dozen students to leave the room safely.  Police say that the teacher and campus employee persuaded the gunman to put down his weapon, and that their actions prevented the situation from worsening.

The critically wounded student, who is also 16 years old, was flown by helicopter to a medical center in nearby Bakersfield.  The teacher suffered a minor wound to the head from a shotgun pellet.  

The shooting comes less than one month after a gunman killed 20 children and six adults at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.  The mass killing has sparked a national debate, and President Barack Obama has made curbing gun violence a priority.  Vice President Joe Biden has met with victims of gun violence, along with hunters and supporters of gun rights.

The vice president says he plans to release his recommendations next week, and that they might include provisions for stricter background checks for gun buyers and a ban on high capacity ammunition clips.  Some gun critics want more, including a renewal of a ban on high-powered assault weapons, which Congress enacted in 1994.  Congress allowed the law to expire in 2004, and several attempts to renew it have failed.

You May Like

Russia-Ukraine Crisis Could Trigger Cyber War

As tensions between Kyiv and Moscow escalate, so too has frequency of online attacks targeting government, news and financial sites More

Egyptian Court Jails 23 Pro-Morsi Supporters

Meanwhile, Egyptian officials say gunmen have killed two members of the country's security forces More

Pakistani Journalists Protest Shooting of Colleague

Hamid Mir, a host for private television channel Geo, was wounded after being shot three times Saturday, but is expected to survive More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politicsi
X
Michael Eckels
April 19, 2014
There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Ukraine, Russia, United in Faith, Divided in Politics

There is a strong historical religious connection between Russia and Ukraine. But what role is religion playing in the current conflict? In the run-up to Easter, Michael Eckels in Moscow reports for VOA.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid