Two-year-old child attends the school, and was not injured, in the northern city of Mount Pleasant
A 22-year-old man is in custody after stabbing a total of seven people to death at a high school in northern Michigan and injuring another person at a second location, officials said.
“This is such a tragic event,” Keith Dunbar, the superintendent of Mount Pleasant schools said at a news conference on Friday. “We will be in this type of state of mourning for a number of days to come.”
The initial victims at the school in Mount Pleasant were students while at the second location the suspect was a former student, Dunbar said. Two-year-old child attends the school, and was not injured, he said.
The suspect did not enter the school, but apparently left the school campus and stabbed the victims elsewhere. The wounded person was taken to a hospital. The school was placed on lockdown while law enforcement responded. All subsequent students were safely evacuated to the surrounding schools.
Michigan state police commissioner Kriste Kibbey Etue said students’ safety was the top priority and said students who could not be moved were either put on buses or by the school to another school campus. She added “we obviously had a critical mass.”
Etue said police discovered the suspect had an active restraining order in place against him. She said the suspect was able to obtain a knife. “We were able to talk him out, but the knife was still in his hand and he was armed with it,” Etue said. “That’s why he was outside, armed.”
Dunbar said several people arrived at Mount Pleasant hospital with stab wounds. He said the injuries did not appear to be life-threatening.
Erica Thibodeau, 31, an English teacher at the high school, told the Associated Press that there was a lockdown before the incident. She said students were moving into their classrooms before the lockdown was called. She described a school employee delivering water to students in the building.
Thibodeau said she taught in a school district in Ohio that experienced a similar attack on a high school campus. “I never imagined something like this would happen here,” she said.
Susan Bonner, a spokesman for Mercy Health Mount Pleasant, said two people were treated at the hospital for minor injuries suffered during the incident and then released.