Four people were injured by shot and hospitalized, six were shocked or injured in scuffles. | AFP

Shooting at a Lycee in Grasse: What is Known about the Attack

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A shootout erupted Thursday at the Lycee, Alexis de Tocqueville in Grasse (Alpes-Maritimes), leading to the outbreak of the attack warning system. A suspect aged 16, enrolled in the school, was arrested. The elements known at that hour.

What happened ?

A shooting took place at midday on Thursday in Lycee Alexis de Tocqueville Grasse (Alpes-Maritimes). A high school student entered the establishment at around 12.30, armed with a pellet gun. Four people were injured by shot and hospitalized, six were shocked or injured in scuffles.

Raid members intervened on hand to lead a “security procedure” and students were evacuated.

“The headmaster rushed” to the aggressor when he released his weapon “to try to reason with him” , said Najat Vallaud-Belkacem, calling the action of “heroic”According to the president of the LR Christian Estrosi Paca region who visited the site, the injury would not have a “vital consequences”.

Thursday at around 12.40, Killian, a student of 17 years, has brought heavily armed in high school Tocqueville Grasse (Alpes-Maritimes) in which he is enrolled
Thursday at around 12.40, Killian, a student of 17 years, has brought heavily armed in high school Tocqueville Grasse (Alpes-Maritimes) in which he is enrolled. | Visactu

What is known of the suspect?

The investigators, who initially hypothesized two suspects finally think only one shooter acted. 16 years old, he studied in 1st L within the school – considered locally as a good level of high school – he was found in possession of several weapons and was arrested just five minutes after the incident. It is not known yet whether any weapons were operational. An explosive device was also found in the backpack of the adolescent.

The individual is “a priori unknown to the police,” said a police source. He has opposed “no resistance” when arrested and was remanded in custody for “assassination attempts” . His parents are now heard by the investigators. The question of possible complicity is currently under study.

Members of the RAID within the school Alexis de Tocqueville in Grasse
Members of the RAID within the school Alexis de Tocqueville in Grasse. | AFP

A terrorist act?

Although the shooting led to the outbreak of the alert SAIP attack, the terrorist track is excluded. “Nothing, no link can be considered a terrorist enterprise” , said the prosecutor in Grasse at a press conference. The act of the suspect could be related “to the bad relations he enjoyed with other students’ high school.

This is “obviously the crazy act of a fragile young man fascinated by firearms” , said the minister on the spot of Education Najat Vallaud-Belkacem. “The investigations that are underway will determine if the attacker has benefited from complicity, if the attacker had specific reasons for doing so” , she said.   

On Facebook, Twitter and YouTube is the name of the main suspect, you could see several photos and slaughter videos like Columbine in the United States, a shooting at a Colorado high school which had 13 deaths in 1999, and that a video of a person with a clown mask wielding a gun

SAIP an alert, this alert application and the information of populations in crisis was triggered. | AFP
SAIP an alert, this alert application and the information of populations in crisis was triggered. | AFP

What policy responses?

François Hollande spoke in mid-afternoon from the Corrèze where he arrived for a trip. “All this leads me to justify the state of emergency”, said he has about the shooting of Grasse and the explosion of a letter bomb at IMF headquarters.

Christian Estrosi, President Republicans in the Provence-Alpes-French Riviera (PACA) spoke on France Info: “I will ask the Minister of Education and the Prefect we could see us very quickly to determine how they plan to put human resources to ensure the safety of students in each of our facilities.

The LR MP Alpes-Maritimes, Eric Ciotti asked Najat Vallaud-Belkacem as the headmaster of the school, who was injured while trying to reason with the shooter if he will be decorated with the Legion of Honour.

Shooting at a Lycee in Grasse: What is Known about the Attack 1

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