Mental health services are available for students; Troutdale police are looking for witnesses
Troutdale Police Chief Scott Anderson spoke at a media briefing at noon today in a field near the Safeway parking lot, just a few blocks from Reynolds High School.
Anderson confirmed one student is dead as result of a lone gunman who entered Reynolds High School this morning.
The lone gunman was also deceased at the scene, he said.
Police are notifying the next of kin for both.
Anderson said investigators have tentatively identified the shooter, but were not confident enough at this point, to reveal the details.
Police have not confirmed whether the shooter was a student at the school.
They also did not confirm if the shooter died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound or was shot by police.
Those details will come out later today once we have more information, said Lt. Steve Alexander, spokesman for the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office.
Another media briefing has been tentatively set for 4 p.m. today at the same location.
Chief Anderson said, I can tell you that the weapon that was used was a rifle."
In addition, Anderson said one teacher suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was treated at the scene. He was identified as Reynolds P.E. teacher Todd Rispler.
During the evacuation process, police found a gun on one person.
This is not believed to be part of the incident, Anderson said. That person was taken into custody.
Troutdale Police are looking for witnesses who saw the shooting or have more information about it.
Witnesses can call the police tip line at 503-250-7943.
It's a long, lengthy investigation," Alexander said. "We are also concentrated on reuniting students with their parents and making sure they have resources available if they need them.
If parents are looking for more information about students or have not been able to contact their son or daughter, call the Reynolds School District's main line at 503-661-7200.
Authorities said there has been a lot of misinformation about when students can retrieve their cars, backpacks and purses that they were asked to leave at the school during the evacuation.
At this point in time the investigation is continuing, Alexander said.
Police do not expect to be releasing cars and personal items until much later, probably tomorrow, he said.
A date and time will be announced as soon as police know.
Counselors available for students
The Fred Meyer parking lot in Wood Village is still acting as a reunification center for families and parents to pick up their kids.
Chief Anderson said, There will be several days of healing and ongoing attention given to the students and staff and anybody impacted by the tragedy.
Two schools resource officers at Reynolds were the first responders to the shooting.
The chief said they responded immediately."
Superintendent Linda Florence said, This is such a tragedy, and my heart goes out to the individuals involved and to their parents."
She thanked the school resource officers for their quick response, as well as students and staff who did some real quick thinking and went into lock down within seconds of hearing about the actual shooter.
Florence said students and staff did an excellent and calm job of evacuating the school today.
Parents are meeting students at Wood Village's Fred Meyer parking lot and being checked out with school staff.
"Students who need mental health, someone to talk to, we have lots of counselors available," Florence said.
Students at home can call Multnomah County Mental Health at 503-988-4888.
Later today, Reynolds staff will notify parents of school closure.
"My heart goes out to all the families"
Troutdale Mayor Daoug Daoust said it has been an unsettling day for the city of Troutdale.
Daoust said he's been on the cell phone all day with the national news media, who have shown quite a bit of interest in what's going on.
The mayor said, I am very impressed with how the police handled this whole operation."
He said it may have helped that a few months ago, Reynolds students went through a dry run of how to respond and evacuate in an emergency or shooter situation.
And the school resource officers helped a lot, he said.
Daoust said he was very impressed with the cooperation of all the police and sheriff departments that showed up.
My heart goes out to all the families, he concluded.
Mental Health Services available
Multnomah County Mental Health crisis line: 503-988-4888.
Mt. Hood Community College has a team of crisis counselors set up inside its gymnasium from 1 p.m. to 7 p.m. today if people want to stop by and talk with a counselor.
It will reopen from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. tomorrow for drop-in.