Police released surveillance video late Monday night, hours after a former student shot through the doors of a Christian elementary school in Nashville and three children and three adults died. The shooter was fatally shot by police at The Covenant School in the city’s Green Hills neighborhood, authorities said.
Police released roughly two minutes of edited video showing the shooter’s car approaching the school from various angles, including children playing on a swing in the background. Further in the interior, the glass doors to the school are seen being shot at, with the shooter diving through one of the broken doors.
Other footage from inside shows the shooter wandering down a school hallway holding a long-barreled handgun, entering a room labeled “church office” and then returning.
The final part of the shot shows the shooter walking down another long corridor with his weapon drawn. In the video, which has no sound, the shooter does not interact with anyone.
The authorities have identified the victims are 9-year-olds Evelyn Dickhouse, Haley Scruggs and William Kinney, 61-year-old Cynthia Peek, 60-year-old Katherine Koons and 61-year-old Mike Hill. All three adults worked at the school.
Police identified shooter like Audrey Hale, 28, of Nashville, who officials said was armed with at least two assault rifles and a handgun. CBS News is trying to confirm Hale’s gender identity.
Nashville Police Chief John Drake said a preliminary investigation indicated the shooting was intentional.
“We have the manifest, we have some records that we’re looking at that relate to that date, the actual incident,” he told reporters. “We have a map of how all of this should happen.”
Police also released a photo of the vehicle in which the shooter allegedly arrived at the school.
Rachel Dibble, who was at a nearby church where the children were reunited with their parents, described the scene as leaving everyone in “complete shock”.
“People were shaking involuntarily,” she said. “The kids…started their morning in their cute little uniforms, they probably ate Froot Loops, and now their whole lives changed today.”
Avery Myrick said her mother, a kindergarten teacher at Covenant, took cover when shots rang out at the school.
“She said she was hiding in the closet and that there was gunfire everywhere and that they were potentially trying to break into her room and that she loved us,” Myrick told WSMV.
On Monday night, as the country digested yet another mass shooting that claimed the lives of children, people left flowers and stuffed toys at a growing makeshift memorial outside a school. Some knelt in prayer.
Stacey Wilford, a nurse, said the shooting so close to home was “very scary”. She lives nearby and has an eight-year-old son who attends school just two miles from Covenant.
“Whenever you hear about school shootings in other states, yes, you feel it, but when it happens at your back door, it’s just different,” Wilford told AFP.
Chad Baker, 44, said he felt “horrified and very sad,” adding that while he supports gun rights, there needs to be more regulation.
“It’s just not enough to protect the children,” he told AFP.
“I carry a pistol with me most of the time, but I don’t need an assault rifle,” he added. “And I don’t think buying flowers should be as easy as buying a gun.”
AFP contributed to this report.