Speed Reads

terrible, terrible

In note, St. Louis gunman describes his life as 'perfect storm' for mass shooting

The suspect in a Monday shooting at a St. Louis high school was carrying an AR-15-style rifle and what looked to be more than 600 rounds of ammunition, The Associated Press reported Tuesday, per Police Commissioner Michael Sack. Both a teacher — physical education teacher Jean Kuczka — and a 15-year-old girl — Alexzandria Bell — were killed in the attack; seven students were injured, all of which are said to be in stable condition.

The gunman, 19-year-old Orlando Harris, left behind a note that read, in part, "I don't have any friends, I don't have any family. I've never had a girlfriend. I've never had a social life. I've been an isolated loner my entire life. This was the perfect storm for a mass shooter," per the St Louis Post-Dispatch. Police found the note in the gunman's car.

Harris was killed following an exchange of gunfire with the police. He had graduated from the school, Central Visual and Performing Arts High School, last year.

The building was locked when the gunman first attempted to get inside, AP reported. A security guard then alerted school officials and contacted the police after seeing Harris try one of the school's doors. "[T]here was no mystery about what was going to happen," Sack said. "He had [the gun] out and entered in an aggressive, violent manner." Harris still somehow managed to get inside, but Sack did not say how.

"This could have been much worse," Sack said.

Monday's school shooting marked "the 40th this year resulting in injuries or death," AP wrote, per a "tally by Education Week — the most in any year since it began tracking shootings in 2018."