A 25-year-old English teacher at a Texas high school was shot and wounded on Wednesday morning, it was learned, as authorities took an 18-year-old into custody and charged him with several accounts of aggravated assault for firing a .45 caliber gun during a fistfight before fleeing in his Dodge Charger.
A family friend told DailyMail.com that one of the people shot on Wednesday was Calvin Pettitt, an English teacher at Timberview High School in Arlington.
Relatives of Pettitt said they were at the hospital to be with him during his recovery. Authorities said a 25-year-old male employee, presumed to be Pettitt, was in good condition after undergoing surgery.
At least one person was critically wounded.
Cops arrested Timothy George Simpkins, 18, the alleged gunman, after his attorney drove him to a police station. Simpkins is being held at the police station in Ott Cribbs in Arlington, according to authorities.
He has been charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a gun.
Calvin Pettitt (left), a 25-year-old English teacher at a Texas high school was shot and wounded on Wednesday morning, it was learned, as authorities took an 18-year-old, Timothy George Simpkins (right), into custody and charged him with several accounts of aggravated assault for firing a .45 caliber gun during a fistfight before fleeing in his Dodge Charger
Police said that the weapon was recovered along England Parkway in Grand Prairie, which is about two miles from the high school. The gun is being examined for ballistics testing, according to law enforcement officials.
Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that the gun used in the incident was not legal, adding that ‘it is illegal for the shoot to either possess or have purchased the gun that was used in this crime.’
A 15-year-old student is in critical condition after he underwent surgery; a 25-year old male employee, Pettitt, is in good condition; and a teenage girl suffered a small abrasion and is expected to be released from hospitals soon.
The other two victims will remain in Medical City Arlington for recovery.
Simpkins turned himself in after he fled the school in a 2018 Silver Dodge Charger with a license plate number PFY6260. Authorities had warned the public that Simpkins was considered ‘armed and dangerous’.
Kolbye added: ‘This is not a random act of violence. This is not somebody attacking our school.’
‘This is a student, we believe right now, preliminary, that it was a student that got into a fight and drew a weapon,’ he said.
Investigators said that a fight ensued in a classroom on the second floor of the high school, prompting the suspect to open fire at around 9:15am.
Three of the victims were students and one was an older person, possibly a teacher, according to law enforcement officials. A pregnant woman fell during the shooting and was treated at the scene, Kolbye said.
Police in Arlington were on the scene in a nearby residential area in search of the suspect on Wednesday afternoon before he turned himself in to police
A massive police presence was seen in a residential neighborhood not far from the school after the shooting on Wednesday
Timberview High School in Arlington, Texas (above) was placed on lockdown on Wednesday morning following reports of an active shooter
People are gathered outside of the school as it was placed on lockdown on Wednesday
Local news stations broadcast images filmed by helicopter news teams that show fire trucks in the parking lot where students and faculty staff were gathering
Agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ (ATF’s) Dallas field office and the FBI were at the scene, but the criminal investigation is being led by the Arlington Police Department.
Timberview serves about 1,900 students in ninth through 12th grades. The sprawling complex opened in 2004.
Kolbye told reporters that on-site officers were inside the school at the time of the shooting. It is unclear how the gun made it into the school.
The ATF said it will track down the weapon that was used.
Assistant Arlington police chief Kevin Kolbye (above) briefs reporters outside the school on Wednesday
‘We’ll figure out where this individual got this gun from,’ Jeff Boshek, special agent in charge of the ATF’s Dallas Field Division, told CNN.
‘Our agents won’t sleep, working with our partners here, to figure out how he got this weapon in his hand to come in this school and cause this tragedy today.
‘So, I don’t have much information I can give you on the weapon. Obviously, we don’t have that yet.
‘We haven’t been in the school to figure out the caliber of the weapon or anything like that yet, but as soon as we do, we’ll have something to get out to you guys.’
One parent told CBS 11 TV that their child contacted them from inside the classroom.
‘He said the doors are locked and the police still haven’t found the shooter,’ the mother recalled.
‘I haven’t been able to reach my son for 20 minutes… when we last spoke I heard the other kids crying and screaming in the classroom.’
One parent who was texting her son from outside the school told WFAA-TV: ‘The teachers were being taken in, and they said two people are in surgery… I don’t know. I don’t know.
‘I just know my kid is in there and he’s scared and they’re in the dark. Police are going up and down.’
The image above shows students evacuating Timberview High School in Arlington, Texas on Wednesday
A law enforcement officer walks in the parking lot of Timberview Hight School after a shooting inside the school
In this image from WFAA-TV video, law enforcement arrives at Timberview High School on Wednesday
One woman posted a video clip on social media her daughter sent her, which purported to be taken by a student at the school. The clip shows students rushing out of their seats after hearing loud bangs.
Officers at the scene ran from the parking lot and into the school while armed with long guns, according to NBC 5.
One local television station, CBS DFW, posted an image believed to be from one of the classrooms inside the school. It shows chairs stacked against a door as a barricade.
Local news stations broadcast images filmed by helicopter news teams that show fire trucks in the parking lot where students and faculty staff were gathering.
The school district later announced that a lockdown had been lifted after the ‘all clear’ was given and the building was secured a short time later.
The Mansfield Independent School District which oversees the school released a statement saying that the school was on lockdown and that students and staff were ‘locked in their classrooms/offices.’
Arlington police said the school district is setting up a staging area where parents can meet their children.
The reunification point is at the Center for Performing Arts located at 1110 W. Debbie Lane.
Large groups of people are seen above in the parking lot of Timberview High School in Arlington on Wednesday
Initial reports indicate that at least three people were wounded
Heavily armed police officers are seen above in the school parking lot on Wednesday
Students are seen above leaving the school on Wednesday after the ‘all clear’ was given
A large group of people as well as several police officers are seen outside the family reunification center on Wednesday
The image above shows students at the family reunification center where they met parents after the shooting
A convoy of school buses transported students to a family reunification center nearby
The reunification point is at the Center for Performing Arts located at 1110 W. Debbie Lane in Mansfield
The image above shows an aerial view of the family reunification center in Mansfield, Texas on Wednesday
Police were seen at the family reunification center in Mansfield, Texas on Wednesday
‘We feel confident that the shooter will be located very, very soon,’ Republican Governor Greg Abbott told reporters during a visit to the Texas-Mexico border hours after the shooting.
Abbott’s office later released a statement that read: ‘As law enforcement continues their investigation, our hearts go out to the victims of this senseless act of violence.
‘Thank you to the law enforcement officers and first responders who arrived on the scene to help the victims and prevent further violence.
‘I have spoken with the Mayor of Arlington and offered any assistance the state can provide, and I have directed the Texas Department of Public Safety to make state resources available to help being the criminal to justice.
‘I ask all Texans to join Cecilia and me in praying for the victims, their families, and the entire Timberview High School community.’
Stephanie Wade (left) comforts her daughter Keeley after she became emotional describing the environment during a school shooting to the media after the pair were reunited in Mansfield
A Burleson, Texas, SWAT officer directs traffic to a parking area for families arriving to be reunited with their school children
A law enforcement officer directs family members arriving at the Center For The Performing Arts to be reunited with their school children
Families stand outside the Mansfield ISD Center for the Performing Arts waiting to be reunited with their children
Families are addressed by an unidentified person (center) as they wait to be reunited with their children
School busses depart past a law enforcement official after dropping off Timberview High School children at the Mansfield ISD Center For The Performing Arts
Transportation officials said drivers should expect delays on State Highway 360 near Debbie Lane.
The southbound SH 360 exit ramp to Debbie Lane is closed at this time.
Arlington Independent School District announced that the following schools were placed on lockout – Arlington Collegiate High; School at Tarrant County College; Ashworth Elementary; Barnett Elementary; Beckham Elementary; Bebensee Elementary; Bowie High School; Bryant Elementary; Hale Elementary; Ousley Junior High; and Pearcy STEM Academy.
Lockout means that the school’s exterior doors are locked from the inside. Administrators say all students are safe inside and that instruction is continuing as planned.
‘Arlington ISD officials have offered their full support to the Mansfield ISD, including mutual aid from the Arlington ISD security teams, counselors, crisis communications or any other requests Mansfield ISD makes,’ the Arlington ISD said in a press release.
The shooting happened just days after a shooting at a Houston charter school that injured an administrator. Texas’ deadliest school shooting occurred in May of 2018 when a then-17-year-old armed with a shotgun and a pistol opened fire at Santa Fe High School near Houston, killing 10 people, most of whom were students.