Wis. Police Praise Students for Helping Stop Possible School Shooting

April 18, 2023
Students informed a school resource officer about seeing someone with a rifle nearby, leading to Waukesha police apprehending a 17-year-old male.

A teenager with a rifle was apprehended near a Wisconsin high school last week, and police are praising students who alerted authorities with helping to avert a possible school shooting.

The incident happened just before 1 p.m. Friday when Waukesha police received a report of a man with a gun in the backyard of a home near Waukesha North High School, The Waukesha County Freeman reports. Along with the rifle, the individual—identified as a 17-year-old man—wore a pillowcase with eyeholes over his head like a hood, police said.

Once the high school was secured, officers located the teen and convinced him to surrender without incident. A rifle was seized, and the teen was taken into custody.

“He was not from the area and recently moved here," said Capt. Dan Baumann. "He was not a student in the district."

“Clearly he garnered the attention," he added. "When someone is doing those type of tactical maneuvers, if you will, it is not someone just goofing around."

Police were quick to credit the students who spoke up about seeing someone with a gun. Baumann called them the real heroes.

“The kids don’t live in this conflict avoidance society that we live in where we can’t face somebody," he said. "They saw something and immediately went to the school resource officer."

"These courageous students are the ones who helped safeguard the community today," Baumann added. "To those amazing students, thank you!"

Charges are still pending against the teen as authorities navigate mental health considerations with the case.

"We are treating him as an adult," said Baumann. "There is more investigating that needs to take place, but the behavioral health issue has put a pause to this case.”

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