Thomas M. Lane III, the 17-year-old accused of fatally shootingthree students and wounding two others in the cafeteria at ChardonHigh School in Ohio last February, is scheduled to be arraignedFriday on charges of aggravated murder and attempted aggravated murder. A Geauga County grand jury returned an indictment this week against Mr. Lane, known as T.J., who used a .22-caliberpistol he found in his grandfather's barn in the Feb. |
27 attack at the school, about 30 miles east of Cleveland. A judge ruled last month that Mr. Lane would be tried as an adultand could face life in prison, if convicted. The three students killed were remembered last weekend at the graduation ceremony for Chardon High School's Class of 2012. Daniel Parmertor, 16; Russell King Jr., 17; and Demetrius Hewlin,16, all died from gunshot wounds after Mr.
Lane fired 10 shots. Twoother students, Joy Rickers and Nick Walczak, were injured. Mr.Walczak is now in a wheelchair, having lost use of his legs. Ms. Rickers, 17, was among the 265 graduates and received a hugeround of applause as she walked onstage.
The Plain Dealer reported that during the ceremony, class officers thanked first respondersfor saving lives that morning and recited their motto. Chardon student motto: "One day your life will flash beforeyour eyes. Make sure it's worth watching" I like it — SUZANNE STRATFORD (@SuzStratford) June 2, 2012 Superintendent Joseph Bergant II spoke about leadership andresiliency among the students and school community in the wake ofthe tragedy, urging students to stay strong. "You havetouched the loves of so many in Chardon, in Ohio and thenation," he said. "No one can tell you how to deal with your grief, becausethere is no right or wrong way," he said, recommending thatthey use the tragedy to remember the importance of life, family andlove.
In his remarks, Andrew R. Fetchik, the school's principal,told the graduating seniors that they had "helped us all toheal." Students and teachers wore special red-and-black ribbons, createdby Maggie Williams as part of her senior project, as a sign ofunity and remembrance. "It's sad, but we all have to move on for them,"Kala Day, a 2012 graduate told the ABC affiliate WEWS-TV. "They are all looking down on us,so they are here with us." Since the shooting, more than $780,000 has been raised, TheNews-Herald reports , to support initiatives to promote healing at the school and forthe victims and their families. The donations, for example, coveredthe cost of wheelchair ramps at the home of Mr.
Walczak. Aspecially equipped van was also made available to transport him tothe prom. Mr. Lane, who attended a nearby alternative high school and waswaiting for his bus in the school cafeteria when he began firingshots, has been jailed since his arrest. A judge rejected therequest by his lawyers to release him on a $500,000 bond.
At a court hearing last month, The Plain Dealer reports , a deputy sheriff said that Mr. Lane had admitted to the shooting.But the sheriff testified that Mr. Lane said he did not know why heshot anyone. The sheriff said he was wearing a T-shirt with the word"Killer" on it when he arrested him about a mile fromthe school.
No motive has been determined. In one of the proceedings, apsychiatrist testified that he had hallucinations, psychosis andfantasies.
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