Maryland high school shooting: ‘I was just shot in my school,’ Great Mills student says on 911 call

The Baltimore Sun

A teenage boy shot at Great Mills High School last week called 911 himself, according to emergency recordings released by St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office.

Desmond Barnes, 14, survived the shooting after being shot in the leg. Jaelynn Willey, 16, died Thursday night after being shot in the head in the March 20 incident. Austin Rollins, the 17-year-old who fired his father’s Glock 9-millimeter pistol inside the school, died after shooting himself in the head, officials said Monday.

The sheriff’s office released 911 audio tapes related to the incident, calls that were made beginning at 7:58 a.m. The tapes include a call to dispatchers from Barnes, who had taken shelter in a classroom after being struck in the leg.

“I was just shot in my school,” Barnes tells the 911 dispatcher during a nearly 15-minute recording. “I was just shot at my school.”

In the background of the call, the voice of the school principal comes over the intercom telling students and teachers to go into lockdown.

A woman takes over the 911 call, telling the dispatcher she has Barnes lying down. She tells the dispatcher that she’s afraid to transport the boy to a safer place, but that he is in pain.

“You’ll be OK, you’ll be OK,” the woman whispers gently.

The dispatcher tells Barnes to stay calm, and that help is on the way. “Stay strong with me, buddy,” he urges.

“Yes, sir,” the 14-year-old responds.

Audio from another 911 call is from a woman who tells a dispatcher she is hiding behind her desk in a classroom in the art hallway, near the site of the shooting. Eleven other students are with her, she says.

“There’s a girl outside my door bleeding on the ground,” the woman tells the dispatcher, saying it appeared that the blood was coming from the girl’s head.

“I have no idea if she’s breathing,” the woman says.

In another 911 call, a girl urges the dispatcher to send help to Great Mills.

“There’s been a shooting here. Please come now,” the girl says.

The dispatcher asks what the problem is. “There’s a school shooting. Please...,” the girl answers.

“Where? Where?” asks the dispatcher.

The reply: “Here at Great Mills High School.”

The dispatcher is told that the girl and her classmates are locked in the classroom and that a teacher is with them.

“OK, how old are you, ma’am?” the dispatcher asks, and the girl answers: “I’m 17.”

According to details released by the St. Mary’s County sheriff’s office, Rollins parked his car at 7:50 a.m. and walked through the school’s main entrance two minutes later.

At 7:57 a.m., he approached classmate Jaelynn Willey, 16, and shot her once in the head with his father’s Glock 9-millimeter pistol. That bullet also struck 14-year-old Desmond Barnes in the leg.

After firing the handgun, Rollins kept walking through the school, where he was confronted by school resource officer Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill just after 8 a.m. Their weapons went off simultaneously 31 seconds later, with Rollins shooting himself in the head and Gaskill shooting Rollins in the hand, officials said.

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