Yesterday tragedy was averted in an Atlanta school by a brave secretary in the McNair Elementary School office…
The suspect in a Georgia elementary school shooting who fired six rounds in a front office before surrendering to police had nearly 500 rounds of ammunition with him, authorities said Wednesday.
Michael Brandon Hill, 20, walked into Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, Ga., outside Atlanta with an AK-47 type assault rifle, along with bags containing hundreds of rounds of ammunition and a couple of magazines on Tuesday, DeKalb County officials announced at a press conference on Wednesday.
On Wednesday, DeKalb County lead investigator Ray Davis and police chief Cedric Alexander outlined what could have been a massacre for the school, but ended with nobody hurt. The suspect surrendered peacefully to police after exchanging gunfire with them.
“He walked in with 498 rounds of ammunition. Fortunately this came to an end quietly, without incident,” Alexander said. “I think we can all make a reasonable assumption he came here to do some harm.”
Hill “did not have anything else in the bag that would harm people,” Davis told reporters. Only one weapon was recovered, authorities said Wednesday, contradicting earlier reports that he had multiple firearms.
As part of their investigation, authorities are looking to locate the owner of the AK-47, who they believe is an acquaintance of Hill’s. Davis said officials believe Hill got the weapon from an acquaintance’s house, although he wouldn’t say whether the weapon was stolen or not.
A photo of Hill holding an AK-47, believed to be the same one used in Tuesday’s shooting, was found on Hill’s cellphone, Davis said.
Also Wednesday, the brother of Michael Brandon Hill, said Hill previously threatened to shoot him and that he suffers from mental disorders.
Timothy Hill told NBC News his brother “was bipolar and suffered from ADD,” and that the two have not spoken recently.
Davis said Hill told investigators he was on medication.
“He indicated that he was on medication and had stopped taking it,” Davis said.
Hill waived his first appearance in DeKalb Magistrate Court Wednesday afternoon.
Hill is charged with aggravated assault on a police officer, making terroristic threats and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. He was questioned for hours by police, but police have no clear idea of what may be a motive or whether Hill has ties to the school.
Police chief Alexander said Hill “may have had prior contact” with someone at the school, but the investigation was still pending.
No other individuals are expected to be charged.
A sheriff’s official in Henry County, Ga., south of Atlanta, said Hill was also charged there in March with making terroristic threats — a felony in Georgia. The indictment is for an incident between Dec. 30 and 31 of 2012 to “unlawfully threaten to commit the crime of murder, a crime of violence, for the purpose of terrorizing another.”
Timothy Hill told NBC News the charge stemmed from Hill threatening to shoot him. Michael Hill was issued a no-contact order afterwards, Timothy Hill said.
Court records show that Hill pleaded guilty and was sentenced to three years’ probation and anger counseling.
Buses transported elementary school students from their school to nearby McNair High School on Wednesday to resume classes, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported, a day after a potential massacre was averted.
Students were greeted by counselors and a sign that read, “Welcome McNair Elementary School. Our prayers our with you,” WSB in Atlanta reported.
- Police: School Shooting Suspect Had Nearly 500 Rounds Of Ammunition (atlanta.cbslocal.com)
- School shooting suspect said he was off medication (news.yahoo.com)
- US school shooting suspect fired on police – NEWS.com.au (news.com.au)
- Man, 20, charged in Georgia school shooting (news.yahoo.com)
- Michael Brandon Hill arrested in Georgia school shooting, officials say (newsday.com)
- Michael Brandon Hill, 20, Charged In Georgia Elementary School Shooting (hollywoodlife.com)
- What led Georgia school gunman to give up (cnn.com)
- Ga. shooting suspect ‘bipolar,’ threatened brother (usnews.nbcnews.com)