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On Wednesday, Kerch Polytechnic College in the eastern region of Crimea became the site of a horrific mass shooting and explosive attack.
Although the timeline remains unclear, two separate events took place. An explosive device filled with small metal objects was detonated in the cafeteria of the polytechnic college, and an 18-year-old student roamed the school shooting people with either a shotgun or a rifle.
As of publication, the death toll stands at 20, while at least 50 others were injured. According to Russian news agency TASS, ten of the injured are in “intensive care.”
The shooter took his own life following his rampage, reports the BBC. Per The Daily Wire’s policy regarding mass shootings, we will neither publish the name nor show any photographs of the shooter, although he has been identified.
News.com.au quotes Russian Health Minister Veronika Skvortsova, who said that the injuries from the explosion are devastating: “We are finding metal balls in kidneys, intestines, in blood vessels. That is how powerful the blast was.” She added that there have been multiple amputations, including feet.
Reuters quotes 15-year-old student Sergei, who said: “I arrived at the hospital; the scene there was awful. They’re bringing in people all covered in blood, some with arms missing, some with legs missing.”
The BBC reports that authorities discovered another “explosive device among the gunman’s possessions” along with one or more “petrol bombs.” The explosive was deactivated.
According to TASS, Crimean Prime Minister Sergei Aksyonov believes that while the shooter acted alone, he may have had help in the planning stages. Such a possibility is being investigated. Aksyonov added that the families of the slain will be given one million rubles, or approximately $15,000. Others will receive less.
As the investigation continued on Thursday, a spokesman for Russia’s National Anti-Terrorism Committee (NAC) said that the shooter had “boasted to his close friends” about having dealt with explosives.
Additionally, Russian television news outlet RBC quotes “a friend” of the shooter, who claims that he expressed hatred for the school and its “evil teachers,” and “hinted that he would take revenge.”
TASS reports that according to Russian lawmaker Alexander Khinshtein, the shooter received his gun permit in September. REN TV, another Russian outlet, claims that the shooter obtained his permit on September 8, and purchased a gun on October 15.
On Thursday, Russian President Vladimir Putin seemed to pin some of the blame for the shooting on the United States, saying in part:
Yesterday’s tragedy is apparently the result of globalization, among other factors, strange as it may seem. We see that on social media and on the Internet, whole communities have been created there, all founded on the well-known tragic events at schools in the United States. …That means that we do not create essential, inspiring and meaningful content for young people, so they seize upon this surrogate heroism. That results in tragedies similar to this one.
As of publication, the information presented is as accurate as possible, but given the ongoing and chaotic nature of the event, the details are subject to change.
The photos embedded within the piece were taken by TASS and Sergei Malgavko respectively.