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HomeNewsLocal newsUpdated: Woodson BB Gun Shooter Came Out of Car, Opened Fire

Updated: Woodson BB Gun Shooter Came Out of Car, Opened Fire

Students were eating outside John H. Woodson Jr. High on St. Croix when two unknown males drove up and opened fire on Thursday. (Screenshot from VIPD press conference)

Update 11 p.m.

One of two males that drove up in front of the John H. Woodson Jr. High School campus actually got out of the car with what looked like a rifle — later found to be a pellet gun — and opened fire as students ate and played outside, V.I. Police Sgt. Charles Orange shared Thursday night.

Police said the make of the car is a white Acura TLX with silver rims and visible damage on the right from the front to back. Though no identifying details about the shooters were released — Orange said one was wearing a black hoodie — both drove off together and headed west after the shots were discharged, he added.

Woodson Principal Henry Mark said school would resume as normal Friday morning, though faculty and staff will be meeting at 7:40 a.m. in the Woodson library to discuss the incident and to prepare for a parent meeting at 9 a.m., which will be held in the auditorium. A student assembly will follow once the parent meeting is finished.

Mark said school officials are fully collaborating with police on the investigation.

Between five and seven students were injured in the shooting Thursday afternoon, which Mark said occurred during lunchtime, when they gathered to eat “under the trees and on picnic tables,” or “play sports and games.” The injuries were non-fatal, with students seeking medical attention from the school’s nurse for bruises and lacerations.

Both Orange and Mark stressed the need for community members to come forward with any information as the investigation continues.

“There’s no place for this in our community,” Orange said. “We need your help to make sure incidents like these don’t ever happen again.”

Woodson Principal Henry Mark, left, and VIPD Sgt. Charles Orange gave more details in a video shared Thursday night. (Submitted photo)

7 p.m.
A spray of pellet gun bullets fired from a passing vehicle hit seven students eating lunch on the John H. Woodson Jr. High lawn Thursday. The students sought treatment for the non-fatal injuries — bruises and other lacerations — while the V.I. Police Department and Education officials have spent the last few hours piecing together details and leads, and responding to parents.

More is expected to come from the VIPD later this evening. In the meantime, Education has a series of meetings on Friday to provide updates:

  • 7:40 a.m. — Emergency meeting for JHW faculty and staff — library
  • 9 a.m. — Parent meeting — auditorium (all parents are encouraged to attend)
  • Directly following parent meeting — schoolwide assembly for students in the school’s auditorium.

A PTA meeting that was scheduled for Thursday at 5:30 p.m. was postponed.

The case is under active investigation. Anyone with information is asked to call Emergency 911, the CIB Tip-Line at 340-778-4850, or Crime Stoppers USVI at 1-800-222-TIPS (8477).

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