Monday brought about another school shooting, this time in Baltimore, Maryland’s Perry Hall High School. Here’s 10 facts to catch you up to speed with the incident and the suspect.
1. He’s the Teen Behind Monday’s Shooting on the First Day of School
15-Year old Robert Wayne Gladden Jr. fired two shots Monday inside the school’s cafeteria. It is not clear if he had a plan or specific targets in mind. According to witnesses, Gladden aimed and shot one student, Daniel Borowy, 17, in the back before being tackled to the ground by guidance counselor Jesse Wasmer (pictured here). Witnesses said Glidden planted one shot into Borowy another round into the ceiling as he was being tackled by Wasmer. Students at a rally on Monday wore T-shirts with “Team Wasmer” painted on the front in honor of the man who disarmed the shooter. The Baltimore County police chief says Gladden fired at random before he was tackled, but Gladden’s lawyer George Psoras told AP that the teen brought the gun to scare bullies and that he fired accidentally.
2.That Student That He Shot? He Has Down Syndrome
As a bullied student, it’s be hard to think that Gladden would target another disadvantaged youth. His goal may have been to hit as many kids as possible, indiscriminately. During the rally on Monday, students wore T-shirts that read “Pray for Daniel.” Daniel Borowy has been described as a “sweet kid” who was “always smiling and saying hi to everybody.”
3.He Looks Like the Girl From The Ring
His images on Facebook have made this incident even more disturbing; he’s seems the poster child for such an attack.
4. Gladden Jr. Will Be Tried as an Adult Under Attempted First-Degree Murder and Assault Charges
Baltimore authorities took only one day to decide to charge the 15-year-old as an adult. Associated Press reports that the student “brought a bottle of vodka, a disassembled shotgun, and 21 rounds of ammunition” to school. Police do not believe he was intoxicated at the time of the shooting, though.
According to AP, Gladden spoke to a reporter on the night of the attack and verified his son’s torment. A female at the household also released a statement expressing her grief for the victim and victim’s family. This dovetails with the lawyer’s spin-doctoring — painting Gladden Jr. as a victim and stressing this is not “a Columbine.”
6. The Day of the Shooting He Posted This Ominous Message On Facebook:
Perhaps if someone was paying attention, this could have been prevented. A Tumblr user by the name of -dazzleme-, who mentions she knows “Bobby,” posted a message trying to explain his motives:
I believe that this should not have happened and I also believe that we (the public) do not yet know all the details. So you all should not be so quick to condemn. The child was shot by mistake and he was also not the only victim. I know Bobby and he isn’t the type of kid to just go and randomly shoot people. He’s the kid that makes you laugh.
7.Under the “Inspirational People” Category On His Facebook Page, He Has Two Names Listed: Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, the Columbine Shooters
Hmm, but the lawyer said this wasn’t a Columbine. Did a lawyer lie to us? Anyway, when you publicly declare two mass-murderers as your inspirations, perhaps someone should be keeping a watchful eye on your actions. That doesn’t seem to be the case here.
8. He Lists His Occupation as Murder/Suicide At The Manson Family
It seems like a secure enough gig. I’m starting to get the feeling this kid’s parental guidance was completely nonexistent.
9. Social Media (i.e Twitter) Was Able to Do What Media Journalists Couldn’t: Get Robert’s Name:
While the media had a hard time finding the shooter’s name on Monday, Twitter had already broken the story (pic via Buzzfeed).
10. He Comes From a Troubled Family.
The Baltimore Sun reports that his residence’s front door had a picture of a gun and the message: We Don’t Call 911. CBS in Baltimore has also reported that, along with the guns taken from his mother’s home, Gladden’s step-father, Andrew Piper (pictured above), was arrested for possession of pot and the illegal firearms. Police believe that Gladden didn’t get the shotgun he used from his step-father, though, but his biological father. Gladden is being held without bail, with a preliminary hearing scheduled for September 7.