Elementary school shooting: Teacher, 8-year-old student killed in murder-suicide

Three people are dead, including a teacher and an 8-year-old student, in an apparent murder-suicide at a San Bernardino, California, elementary school Monday, according to police.

The suspected gunman was identified as 53-year-old Riverside resident Cedric Anderson, who went to North Park Elementary School armed with a .357 revolver and opened fire on his wife, 53-year-old Karen Elaine Smith, said San Bernardino Police Chief Jarrod Burguan at a press conference Monday afternoon.

Anderson and Smith were found dead in a special needs classroom that serves the first through fourth grades, Burguan said. Anderson entered the classroom “without saying anything” before he opened fire, Burguan said. There were a total of 15 students and two aides in the classroom at the time, he added.

The preliminary investigation shows that Anderson and Smith were estranged, Burguan said, describing their marriage as “relatively short.” The pair were only married for a few months and had been separated for about a month, Burguan said. Burguan added that Anderson has a criminal history, which includes weapons charges, accusations of domestic violence and drug charges, though he did not go into specific detail.

Students at the elementary school were taken to the nearby Cajon High School for safety immediately following the incident, Burguan said. All of the students who were in the classroom at the time of the shooting have since been reunited with their families, Marsden said.

North Park Elementary School will be closed for at least the next two days, Marsden added. The rest of the county’s schools will be open. About 500 students attend North Park Elementary.

The mother of a fourth-grade student at the school told KABC that she was watching the news when she heard about the shooting and said she “ran right over” to the school to check on her daughter, saying she was “scared to death.”

The woman said she could see her daughter on the other side of the fence and said she was “crying” as she held hands with her classmates.

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