Lori Hickey

On Friday, a shooting in the gymnasium of the Delaware Valley Charter School in Philadelphia, which has more than 600 students, resulted in the hospitalization of two 15-year-old victims. Both victims sustained serious injuries to their arms and were hospitalized. As of last evening, the female victim was discharged, but the male victim remains in the hospital. Security cameras showed seven students present in the gym at the time of the incident, which was around 3:00pm in the afternoon. The cameras also show the firearm discharging as it was pulled from a backpack, suggesting the firing may have been accidental. The bullet went through the female's arm and then struck the male victim. Both victims’ names have not been released due to their age. After the shot was fired, the school was locked down and all students were searched and evacuated. The building was cleared by 5:30pm. There was some confusion in the aftermath of the incident as to the potential suspects. As of this morning, there is one alleged suspect in custody, 17-year-old Raisheem Rochwell, who is facing two counts of aggravated assault for his suspected involvement. He is being charged as an adult. The weapon has not yet been recovered, but police are continuing to search for the gun, as well as investigate how Rochwell was able to get past the school’s security and metal detectors to bring it into the building. 

The MSA Research and Intelligence Analysis (RIA) Group has been monitoring this situation, and has identified the following implications:
      • In this case, the lockdown on part of school officials and swift law enforcement response likely helped diffuse the situation before it worsened. 
      • The actions helped determine the incident was not the result of an active shooter. 
      • This is the second report of a school shooting within a week. On Tuesday, seventh-grade student Mason Campbell of Berrendo Middle School in Roswell, NM, fired a shot gun three times in the school gym, where students meet before classes start. The shots fired critically injured two victims. Campbell has been charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon. 
      • Last month, teenage gunman Karl Pierson shot and killed a classmate Claire Davis at a Colorado high school. Pierson was armed with a 12-gauge shot gun, two Molotov cocktails and 125 rounds of ammunition. Pierson turned his weapon on himself and was found dead from a gunshot wound. 
      • The frequency of school shootings is part of an ongoing nationwide trend that has numerous types of public facilities implementing new security measures, including employing security guards and active shooter drills. 
      • In many cases, having a well-rehearsed, comprehensive active shooter protocol has helped mitigate casualties. 
      • There will likely be more investigation into how the metal detectors failed to detect Rochwell’s weapon as well as discussion on how to continue to best mitigate these types of scenarios.

MSA Security's Research and Intelligence Analysis Group provides real-time intelligence on events and worldwide threats as they evolve.
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