An attack by a former student leaves a 16-year-old girl dead and another teenager wounded, official in southern city says.
A 16-year-old girl has been killed and another teen wounded in a school shooting in the southern Brazilian state of Parana, according to local officials in the city of Cambe.
The gunman, a former student believed to be approximately 20 or 21 years old, entered the Professora Helena Kolody state school on Monday purportedly to retrieve some documents, spokesperson Thiago Mossini told The Associated Press.
Once inside the building, the man fired at least a dozen shots before being restrained by a school employee, Mossini said. The alleged attacker was later arrested by police.
The wounded student, a 17-year-old, remains in critical condition, the University Hospital of Londrina said in a statement on Monday evening. The medical team said that, while it was necessary to place a catheter, the patient’s critical state did not allow for him to be transported to the surgery room at the moment.
The young man’s father, Rodrigo Augusto, told TV network Globo News earlier on Monday that a bullet was still lodged in his son’s head. “It’s my birthday today. We usually stay together all day on my birthday, and then… today I couldn’t in the morning,” Augusto said.
Images circulating on TV and social media showed dozens of students gathered outside the school, some crying, as an ambulance approached the gate.
“Yet another young life taken away by the hatred and violence we can no longer tolerate within our schools and society,” President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva said on his official Twitter account on Monday.
Justice Minister Flavio Dino, meanwhile, indicated that part of the blame lay with internet culture. In a speech, he called the “irresponsible proliferation of messages of violence and hate on the internet” one of the most pressing issues today.
Brazil has seen almost two dozen attacks or violent episodes in schools since 2000, half of them in the last 14 months.
On April 5, for example, an attack at a daycare centre killed four children and prompted the government to launch an unprecedented crackdown. Some 3,400 police officers carried out a nationwide sweep to round up several hundred people accused of spreading hate speech or stoking school violence.
Lula called the daycare attack at that time an “absurd act of hate and cowardice”.
“There is no greater pain than that of a family who loses its children or grandchildren, even more so in an act of violence against innocent and defenseless kids,” he wrote on Twitter.
A stabbing attack in March also left one teacher dead and five people wounded in Sao Paulo. The suspect in that attack was allegedly inspired by a 2019 school shooting.
And in November 2022, three people were killed and 11 others were wounded after a former student opened fire at two schools in the southeastern state of Espirito Santo.