Nathaniel Berhow, the reported shooter at Saugus High School California, has died, according to authorities. Picture: Supplied
Nathaniel Berhow, the reported shooter at Saugus High School California, has died, according to authorities. Picture: Supplied

Teen high school shooter dies

The teenage suspect in a school shooting that took the lives of two students in California on Thursday has died in hospital, according to local media.

Citing the sheriff's department, the Los Angeles Times and CBS Los Angeles reported that the alleged suspect, Nathaniel Berhow, died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound on Friday afternoon.

Authorities said that the suspect, who was a student at the high school in Santa Clarita, north of Los Angeles, carried out the attack on his 16th birthday.

On Thursday morning, Berhow allegedly pulled a handgun out of his backpack at the Santa Clarita school and shot five of his fellow students before turning the gun on himself, authorities said.

"We didn't know if the shooter had a clear view of us or not, we just sprinted and we just like prayed for our lives," one student told CBS News. "I actually thought I was going to die."

A 16-year-old girl and a 14-year-old boy were killed in the incident, Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva said.

 

Dominic Blackwell, left, and Gracie Anne Muehlberger were killed at Saugus High School by Nathaniel Tennosuke Berhow. Picture: Supplied
Dominic Blackwell, left, and Gracie Anne Muehlberger were killed at Saugus High School by Nathaniel Tennosuke Berhow. Picture: Supplied

According to CBS, Gracie Muehlberger, 15, and Dominic Blackwell, 14, were killed; the other three victims are expected to survive. Two of the victims, Mia Page Tretta and Addison Koegle, were released from the hospital on Saturday.

The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday that investigators had seized unregistered firearms from the teenage suspect's home, and were trying to determine the origin of the handgun used in the attack.

 

Saugus High School student, named only as Addison, was one of five kids shot by gunman Nathaniel Berhow Santa Clarita and saved by choir teacher Katie Holt. Picture: ABC/Supplied
Saugus High School student, named only as Addison, was one of five kids shot by gunman Nathaniel Berhow Santa Clarita and saved by choir teacher Katie Holt. Picture: ABC/Supplied

Authorities said that there was no other suspect and no established motive for the attack.

After more than 40 interviews and evaluation of evidence, no motive had been established, said Capt. Kent Wegener, of the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department's homicide unit. He said no manifesto, diary or suicide note had been found.

"It still remains a mystery why," Sheriff Alex Villanueva told a press conference.

The teenager opened fire after being dropped off by his mother at Saugus High School in the Los Angeles suburb of Santa Clarita.

Nathaniel Tennosuke Berhow fired the final bullet into his own head.

He died at 3:32 p.m. Friday at a hospital with his mother present, according to a Sheriff's Department statement.

The shooting in an outdoor plaza took just 16 seconds and was recorded on security video, authorities said.

Nathaniel Berhow died of his self-inflicted gunshot wound on Friday, according to authorities. Picture: Supplied
Nathaniel Berhow died of his self-inflicted gunshot wound on Friday, according to authorities. Picture: Supplied

The teen stood by himself, did not appear to interact with anyone and then walked to the center of the quad, Capt. Villanueva said.

"As far as we know the actual targets were at random," the sheriff said. The sheriff said the conclusion that the attack was planned was based on the shooter bringing the weapon, handling it with enough expertise and counting the rounds fired.

"It wasn't a spur-of-the-moment act," Capt. Villanueva said.

Three off-duty law enforcement officers were first on the scene and treated some of the wounded until paramedics arrived.

"You have the image of a loner, someone who is socially awkward, doesn't get along, some violent tendencies, dark brooding and online strange postings - stuff like that," Capt. Villanueva said.

Friends said while the boy could be introverted, he had a girlfriend and good social network focused on his cross-country teammates.


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