Two wounded in Maryland school shooting, student gunman dies

GREAT MILLS, Md. (Reuters) - A 17-year-old boy opened fire at a Maryland high school on Tuesday in an attack that left two fellow students wounded, then died after a gunfight with a police officer posted there, amid a renewed national debate over gun violence in schools.

The shooting in St. Mary's County, about 70 miles south of Washington, came five weeks after a high school massacre in Florida and just days before a planned student-led march in the U.S. capital for tougher gun laws.

The latest bloodshed erupted shortly before 8 a.m. at Great Mills High School and lasted less than a minute, county Sheriff Timothy Cameron said, but the precise sequence of events was still being sorted out hours later.

A 16-year-old girl was in intensive care with life-threatening wounds, Cameron told a news conference. A 14-year-old boy also struck by gunfire was listed in good condition at a hospital.

31 PHOTOS
Shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland
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Shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland
Maryland State Troopers are seen on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
LEONARDTOWN, MD - MARCH 20: A student from Great Mills High School is comforted be her guardians while being picked up at Leonardtown High School following a school shooting at Great Mills High School March 20, 2018 in Leonardtown, Maryland. Early reports indicate two students were wounded in the school shooting and the gunman died at the scene. Students from Great Mills High School were evacuated to nearby Leonardtown High School following the shooting. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
LEONARDTOWN, MD - MARCH 20: A heavily armed law enforcement officer stands guard as students from Great Mills High School are evacuated to Leonardtown High School following a school shooting at Great Mills High School March 20, 2018 in Leonardtown, Maryland. Early reports indicate two students were wounded in the school shooting and the gunman died at the scene. Students from Great Mills High School were evacuated to nearby Leonardtown High School following the shooting. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
A sign is seen in front of the Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school on March 20, 2018 . A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
LEONARDTOWN, MD - MARCH 20: A student from Great Mills High School is comforted be her guardian while being picked up at Leonardtown High School following a school shooting at Great Mills High School March 20, 2018 in Leonardtown, Maryland. Early reports indicate two students were wounded in the school shooting and the gunman died at the scene. Students from Great Mills High School were evacuated to nearby Leonardtown High School following the shooting. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Emergency personnel and law enforcement officers stand outside Great Mills High School following a shooting on Tuesday morning in St. Mary's County, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Emergency services and law enforcement vehicles are seen outside the Great Mills High School following a shooting on Tuesday morning in St. Mary's County, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
LEONARDTOWN, MD - MARCH 20: Students from Great Mills High School walk to meet their parents at Leonardtown High School following a school shooting at Great Mills High School March 20, 2018 in Leonardtown, Maryland. Early reports indicate two students were wounded in the school shooting and the gunman died at the scene. Students from Great Mills High School were evacuated to nearby Leonardtown High School following the shooting. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Law enforcement vehicles are seen outside the Great Mills High School following a shooting on Tuesday morning in St. Mary's County, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Emergency personnel and law enforcement officers stand outside Great Mills High School following a shooting on Tuesday morning in St. Mary's County, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
GREAT MILLS, MD - MARCH 20: Maryland Governor Larry Hogan, briefs the media about a shooting this morning at Great Mills High School on March 20, 2018 in Great Mills, Maryland. Two students were shot after another student opened fire in the hallway before being shot and killed by a school resource officer. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
Frank Lanham (2nd R), a teacher at Great Mills High School leaves Leonardtown High School in Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. Great Mills students and parents reunited at Lenoardtown after the shooting at their school. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Great Mills High School 10th grade student Niyah Norton and her mother Chanda leave Leonardtown High School in Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. Great Mills students and parents reunited at Lenoardtown after the shooting at their school. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Law enforcement vehicles are parked in front of the Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school on March 20, 2018 . A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Great Mills High School senior Wayne Waul (2nd L) and his mother Jill Ryan (4th L) leave Leonardtown High School in Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. Great Mills students and parents reunited at Lenoardtown after the shooting at their school. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Emergency services and law enforcement vehicles are seen outside the Great Mills High School following a shooting on Tuesday morning in St. Mary's County, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Maryland State Troopers are seen on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
A Sheriff's car is seen on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
GREAT MILLS, MD - MARCH 20: School buses are lined up in front of Great Mills High School after a shooting on March 20, 2018 in Great Mills, Maryland. It was reported that two students at a Maryland high school were injured after a colleague opened fire in the hallway just before classes began. (Photo by Mark Wilson/Getty Images)
LEONARDTOWN, MD - MARCH 20: A student from Great Mills High School is comforted by a guardian while being picked up at Leonardtown High School following a school shooting at Great Mills High School March 20, 2018 in Leonardtown, Maryland. Early reports indicate two students were wounded in the school shooting and the gunman died at the scene. Students from Great Mills High School were evacuated to nearby Leonardtown High School following the shooting. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
School buses, security and State Troopers are seen on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Great Mills High School senior Wayne Waul (2nd L) and his mother Jill Ryan (4th L) leave Leonardtown High School in Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. Great Mills students and parents reunited at Lenoardtown after the shooting at their school. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
A man looks out of a school bus on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Great Mills High School senior Wayne Waul leaves Leonardtown High School in Leonardtown, Maryland, U.S., March 20, 2018. Great Mills students and parents reunited at Lenoardtown after the shooting at their school. REUTERS/Sait Serkan Gurbuz
Hi Twitter. I am in Great Mills HS. My school is on a very real lockdown threat and there’s already someone possibl… https://t.co/e1b8b5K2iQ
A shooting investigation is underway at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland. Multiple injuries have be… https://t.co/S4YypMbEQr
Shooting at Great Mills High School in Maryland, school confirms via the @FoxNews App https://t.co/gK1xdyxhaQ
As I'm dropping my little sister off at LHS I have about a dozen cop cars and two ambulances fly down the road past… https://t.co/HHjzr3PlVR
BREAKING: School shooting reported in Maryland. School officials confirm Great Mills High School is on lockdown.… https://t.co/8Hfl1yJoC2
We are aware of the situation at Great Mills High School. GMHS parents, please report to our auditorium. Leonardtow… https://t.co/S0W3HJXeew
School buses, security and State Troopers are seen on March 20, 2018 at Great Mills High School in Great Mills, Maryland after a shooting at the school. A shooting took place at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said, reportedly leaving several people injured just days before a nationwide student-organized march against school violence. Three people were shot in the incident at Great Mills High School, located about a 90-minute drive southeast of the US capital Washington, according to a county official quoted by The Baltimore Sun.Three people, including the assailant, were in critical condition after a shooting at a high school in the eastern US state of Maryland on Tuesday, officials said. / AFP PHOTO / JIM WATSON (Photo credit should read JIM WATSON/AFP/Getty Images)
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The gunman was identified as Austin Wyatt Rollins, and Cameron said there was "an indication" the teenager had a prior relationship with the female student, although that was still under investigation.

The sheriff initially told reporters Rollins shot both victims with a handgun, but then said in response to questions that investigators were still uncertain who fired the shot that hit the 14-year-old.

Cameron also said it was not clear whether Rollins died after being shot by sheriff's Deputy 1st Class Blaine Gaskill, who was assigned as the Great Mills school resource officer, or from self-inflicted gunfire.

The latest in a long string of deadly shootings at U.S. schools and colleges occurred little more than a month after 14 students and three faculty members were fatally shot on Feb. 14 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The accused gunman, a 19-year-old former student expelled from the school for disciplinary reasons last year, was arrested and charged with 17 counts of murder.

21 PHOTOS
Protests against gun violence following Florida school shooting
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Protests against gun violence following Florida school shooting
Students who walked out of their Montgomery County, Maryland, schools protest against gun violence in front of the White House in Washington, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Protestors rally outside the Capitol urging Florida lawmakers to reform gun laws, in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Colin Hackley TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Students from South Plantation High School carrying placards and shouting slogans walk on the street during a protest in support of the gun control, following a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Plantation, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
MARJORY STONEMAN DOUGLAS HIGH SCHOOL, PARKLAND, FLORIDA. 02/25/2018 In the background, the school building, now slated to be demolished, where 17 children and teachers were killed by lone gunman Nikolas Cruz. On February 14, 2018, a former school Stoneman Douglas student Nikolas Cruz entered the school at 2.30pm and proceeded to kill 3 teachers and 14 school children in a 7 minute shooting spree. Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School is located in Parkland, Florida, in the Miami metropolitan area. It is a part of the Broward County Public School district, and it is the only public high school in Parkland. (Photo by Giles Clarke/Getty Images)
Students from South Plantation High School carrying placards and shouting slogans walk on the street during a protest in support of the gun control, following a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Plantation, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
Melissa Conrad-Freed, former student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, and Mark Forst, mourn close to the fence of Western High School during a protest in support of the gun control, in Davie, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
After walking out of class with hundreds of her fellow students at Walt Whitman High School in Montgomery County, Maryland, Gwen Parks holds up her hands during a protest against gun violence in front of the White House in Washington, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Students from South Plantation High School carrying placards and shouting slogans walk on the street during a protest in support of the gun control, following a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Plantation, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
Students from South Plantation High School carrying placards and shouting slogans walk on the street during a protest in support of the gun control, following a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Plantation, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
A protester holds a sign at a Call To Action Against Gun Violence rally by the Interfaith Justice League and others in Delray Beach, Florida, U.S. February 19, 2018. REUTERS/Joe Skipper TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY
Students who walked out of their classes at Montgomery County, Maryland schools, protest against gun violence in front of the White House in Washington, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Students who walked out of their Montgomery County, Maryland, schools protest against gun violence in front of the White House in Washington, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque
Baltimore students outside City Hall stage a #gunsdowngradesup school walkout on Tuesday, March 6, 2018 to protest gun violence in schools and the city. (Lloyd Fox/Baltimore Sun/TNS via Getty Images)
Students from South Plantation High School carrying placards and shouting slogans walk on the street during a protest in support of the gun control, following a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Plantation, Florida, February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Carlos Garcia Rawlins
SOMERVILLE, MA - FEBRUARY 28: Senior Gabriel Kafka-Gibbons, left, and junior Seweryn Brzezinski, center, sit on the sidewalk during a student walkout at Somerville High School in Somerville, MA on Feb. 28, 2018. Some 200 Somerville High School students walked out at 8:17 a.m. to demand an end to gun-related violence in the wake of the attack in a Florida high school that left 17 people dead. The students exited the school as scheduled, at a time that reflects the number of staffers and students murdered Feb. 14 at a Parkland, FL, school, and then gathered outside as part of a 17-minute long silent protest. (Photo by Craig F. Walker/The Boston Globe via Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, Feb. 21, 2018 -- Students from Washington local high schools demonstrate for stricter gun control outside the White House in Washington D.C., the United States, on Feb. 21, 2018. U.S. President Donald Trump said Tuesday that he has recommended that 'bump stocks', devices that enable semi-automatic weapons to fire hundreds of rounds per minute, be banned, while debates on gun rights continue across the country. (Xinhua/Ting Shen via Getty Images)
MARJORY STONEMAN DOUGLAS HIGH SCHOOL, PARKLAND, FLORIDA. 02/25/2018 A young school child holds a sign 'Protect Children NOT Guns' at Stoneman Douglas High School. On February 14, 2018, a former school Stoneman Douglas student Nikolas Cruz entered the school at 2.30pm and proceeded to kill 3 teachers and 14 school children in a 7 minute shooting spree. Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School is located in Parkland, Florida, in the Miami metropolitan area. It is a part of the Broward County Public School district, and it is the only public high school in Parkland. Photo by Giles Clarke/Getty Images
Rabbi Jack Romberg speaks at a rally during which several thousand protestors urge Florida lawmakers to reform gun laws outside the Capitol, in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Colin Hackley
Protestors rally outside the Capitol urging Florida lawmakers to reform gun laws, in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Colin Hackley
Protestors rally outside the Capitol urging Florida lawmakers to reform gun laws, in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Colin Hackley
Protestors rally outside the Capitol urging Florida lawmakers to reform gun laws, in the wake of last week's mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, in Tallahassee, Florida, U.S., February 21, 2018. REUTERS/Colin Hackley
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That massacre sparked a student movement against gun violence, including a national school walkout last week that included some Great Mills students. A march in Washington by gun control activists is set for Saturday.

"We recently had a protest about school violence last week, and now this has happened," said Kameron Norwood, 16, as he and other students waited for relatives to pick them up from a nearby high school.

Cameron said Rollins pulled out a Glock semiautomatic pistol in a hallway of the school and opened fire.

The attack ended after Gaskill ran inside and confronted Rollins, with each firing a single shot almost simultaneously.

The officer was not harmed, Cameron said. Rollins was confirmed dead nearly three hours later at a hospital.

Rollins' Facebook page showed he was a fan of the Dallas Cowboys football team and NASCAR auto racing, and he appeared several times on the school's honor and merit rolls for good grades that were published in a local newspaper.

'WE NEED MORE THAN PRAYERS'

If authorities confirm Gaskill fired the fatal shot, it may be the only known instance in which a school resource officer, or SRO, typically a law enforcement member assigned to a school, killed a student gunman during a shooting.

In 2001, an officer shot and wounded an 18-year-old student who wounded two teachers and three other students with a shotgun at Granite Hills High School in El Cajon, California, according to the National Association of School Resource Officers.

An armed school resource officer had been on the Stoneman Douglas campus, and was criticized for failing to stop that gunman, who had an AR-15 assault-style rifle. The officer, who later resigned, said he had not been sure whether the gunfire was coming from inside or outside the school.

President Donald Trump and the National Rifle Association have proposed arming some teachers, while gun safety advocates have demanded a ban on semiautomatic rifles, among other restrictions.

Maryland's two Democratic U.S. senators, Chris Van Hollen and Ben Cardin, called on Congress on Tuesday to pass gun safety legislation, where such measures have stalled for years.

The state's Republican governor, Larry Hogan, said his thoughts and prayers were with the victims, but added: "We need more than prayers."

After the Parkland shooting, Hogan proposed spending $125 million to enhance school security, including panic buttons and metal detectors, and vowed to provide an additional $50 million to hire school resource officers and counselors.

(Additional reporting by Jonathan Allen, Gina Cherelus, Elizabeth Dilts and Sheila Dang in New York; Writing by Joseph Ax; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Peter Cooney)

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