Sunday, 14th July 2024

At least 8 killed in school shooting in Brazil

Two armed men wearing hoods entered the State School Raul Brasil in the town of Suzano -- about 70 kilometres east of Sao Paulo -- and fired at students and staff

Sunday, 7th July 2024

Two armed men wearing hoods entered the State School Raul Brasil in the town of Suzano -- about 70 kilometres east of Sao Paulo -- and fired at students and staff, the Sao Paulo government said on its official Twitter account earlier Wednesday.

Ten people, including the two attackers, were killed in total, Sao Paulo police said. The students who died were boys mostly 15 and 16 years old.

Before entering the Raul Brasil school in Suzano near Sao Paulo, the former pupils aged 17 and 25 shot and killed the younger assailant’s uncle, who owned a car rental agency where they stole a vehicle.

Police identified the assailants as Guilherme Taucci Monteiro, 17, and Luiz Henrique de Castro, 25. The 17-year-old was the leader and the main planner, an investigator said.

Another 10 people, mostly school children, were shot and injured, with several in serious condition, said police.

An amateur video aired by Globo TV showed children screaming, running and begging for their lives as loud shots were heard.

Children climbed and jumped over a wall that surrounds the school building, then sprinted down streets, screaming for help, security-camera footage from homes nearby showed.

The two assailants spent more than a year planning their attack, which they “hoped would draw more attention than the Columbine massacre,” an investigator said on condition of anonymity. In the 1999 attack on Columbine High School in Littleton, Colorado, two students killed 13 people.

A motive was not yet clear. The school is in a middle-class neighbourhood and has about 1,000 students aged 11 to 16. One teacher told police that the younger attacker had been bullied while he was a student there.

Gun laws are extremely strict in Brazil, but it is not difficult to illegally purchase a weapon. Far-right President Jair Bolsonaro made relaxing gun control a cornerstone of his campaign last year.