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One child killed and two injured in school shooting in Finland – 12-year-old arrested – Dagsavisen

The police were notified of the incident at 9 a.m. local time and urged people to stay away from the area.

– Do not open the door to strangers, was the police’s call.

The Viertola school has around 800 pupils from first to ninth grade and 90 staff.

An eyewitness who works nearby tells the newspaper Evening newspaper that he heard gunshots from the school grounds.

Terrible screams

– I didn’t understand at first that it was a gun. Then I heard a terrible scream, and several children ran across the courtyard, he says.

Principal Sari Laasila says Evening News that pupils and staff hid inside the school while they waited for further instructions from the police.

Another eyewitness tells the newspaper Helsingin sanomat newspaper that two ambulances left the school at 10 o’clock, and Finnish police initially confirm that three children were injured and sent to hospital.

One child died from the injuries, and the condition of the other two is described as critical.

Arrested at gunpoint

The police state that both the victims and the perpetrator are twelve years old, but it is not known what may have been the motive behind the shooting, which took place inside a classroom.

The perpetrator fled the scene, but was arrested shortly afterwards without drama in Siltamäki, around 5 kilometers away.

– At the moment, there is nothing to indicate more people involved, says Tomi Salosyrjä in the police at a press conference on Tuesday afternoon.

According to the police, the person, who was himself a student at the school, was then still in possession of the firearm that was used. It must belong to a family member, they further state.

Since the perpetrator is under 15 years of age, according to the police, he cannot be held in custody, but will be handed over to the child protection service.

Deeply shocked

Vantaa has around 200,000 inhabitants, is Finland’s fourth largest city and is located around 20 kilometers north of Helsinki. Deputy mayor Katri Kalske speaks Yle that the municipality’s crisis team has been notified.

Prime Minister Petteri Orpo writes on X that he is deeply shocked by the incident in Vanda.

– My thoughts go out to the victims, their near and dear ones, relatives and other students and staff at the Viertola school, he writes.

– I can only imagine the rest, pain and turmoil many families are experiencing now, writes Minister of the Interior Mari Rantanen on X.

Education Minister Anna-Maja Henriksson is also shocked by the school shooting.

More deadly school shootings

Finland has been hit by several deadly school shootings in the past.

In November 2007, an 18-year-old man killed eight people at a high school in Jokela. He then took his own life.

Less than a year later, in September 2008, a student shot and killed ten people at a university in Kauhajoki before taking his own life.

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