ST. LOUIS – St. Louis police and federal authorities are combing through evidence yielded from searches of the home and car of the gunman in Monday morning’s mass shooting at the Central Visual and Performing Arts High School in South St. Louis. 

The goal of it all is to prevent the next school shooting. 

Police identified the gunman as 19-year-old Orlando Harris. He graduated from the school last year and was intent on carrying out a massacre there, according to police. 

“The individual had almost a dozen 30-round high capacity magazines on him,” interim St. Louis Police Chief Michael Sack said. “That’s a whole lot of victims there.” 

Police were on the scene and made immediate entry into the school within four minutes of the first ‘active shooter’ call. Officers killed Harris in an exchange of gunfire. 

Harris killed a 16-year-old teenage girl and a 61-year-old teacher, Jean Kuczka.

Seven other students, ages 15 to 16, were wounded, three by gunfire, police said. Another student suffered a fractured ankle. She was among those jumping from a third-floor window to keep from being shot, police explained.

One student was initially listed in serious condition, but by the evening none of the injuries were considered life-threatening. 

The FBI and ATG conducted a search of Harris’s home and his car, which was parked outside the school. Police are looking into items from the car that may have served as some sort of manifesto or list of past school shootings and shooters. 

“I’m not really sure what might have been there. I know there was some evidence that was taken out of the vehicle,” Sack shared. 

A motive was not yet clear, but Harris broke in with his rifle drawn. He was reportedly telling others this was the day they were going to die. He had no adult criminal record, according to police. 

Investigators are looking into whether mental illness was a factor.   

St. Louis FBI Special Agent in Charge, Jay Greenburg, issued a warning regarding an increase in ‘chatter’ about more school shootings. 

“Since this happened this morning we have received an uptick in additional allegations of potential school shooters around here,” he said.  “Any hoax or any joke that they’re sending about a school shooting right now will be taken very seriously.” 

The FBI has also started a digital evidence collection website. Anyone with digital photos, videos, audio, or otherwise can upload them directly to authorities at www.fbi.gov/vpa.


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