Australia News

Teen faces court after gunshots fired at school


A teenager accused of firing multiple gunshots at a school, hitting a classroom as teachers and students scrambled for cover, has been ordered to have a mental health assessment.

The 15-year-old boy, who cannot be named for legal reasons, briefly appeared in the Perth Children’s Court on Friday via video link.

The youth could be seen on a courtroom television at Banksia Hill Juvenile Detention Centre sitting at a desk in a empty room, wearing a sweatshirt.

He was not required to enter a plea and was remanded in custody to reappear in the same court on Tuesday.

The court ordered mental health and bail suitability assessments ahead of a potential application for release when the matter returns to court.

During the hearing, the boy answered “yes” and “no” to questions as the seven charges he faces were read out.

They include discharging a firearm to cause fear and possessing a prohibited weapon.

The teen is also accused of unlawfully driving, three counts of unlicensed person possessing a firearm and ammunition and unlawful act with intent to harm.

Police alleged that the boy used two rifles to shoot three rounds at Atlantis Beach Baptist College, in the suburb of Two Rocks about 70 kilometres north of Perth, about midday on Wednesday.

The incident, understood to be the first of its kind in WA, forced the school into lockdown, as students and teachers hid in a storeroom.

Police have also previously said the teen fired the shots from a car park while he was inside a vehicle, which is understood to belong to his father.

On Thursday, forensic officers could be seen analysing two bullet holes about five metres apart on the side of a demountable classroom.

One was above an external doorway and the other was beside a window, in clear view across a 30-metre-wide grassed courtyard adjacent to the car park.

Body-worn camera footage showed officers called to the scene took the boy into custody without incident. They allege they found two rifles, .243 and .22 calibre, in the car he had driven to the school, as well as three bullet shells.

The weapons are understood to be registered to the boy’s father.

The incident has shocked the Perth community. Premier Mark McGowan said work had already begun to dramatically reform the state’s gun laws.

Mr McGowan said it was “unthinkable” a US-style school shooting could have happened at a WA school and it was lucky no one was killed during the incident.

“The bullets went close,” he said on Thursday.

“It’s a terrible, terrible thing and it could have been so much worse.”

Journalists were cautioned during the court hearing to report the matter responsibly. Prosecutor Brad Hollingsworth said some media had been erroneously reported the boy had been expelled from the school.

Atlantis Beach Baptist College is a co-educational school for boys and girls from kindergarten to year 10.

  • Beyond Blue 1300 224 636
  • Lifeline 131 114


Most Related Links :Planet News||World News||Entertainment News||US News

Source link

Back to top button