‘Number of fatalities’ after shooting at Parkland, Florida, high school, senator says

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Authorities were responding to an active shooter at a Florida high school on Wednesday afternoon. The situation still was not secured, more than an hour after it began.

Sen. Bill Nelson, D-Fla., told MSNBC just before 4 p.m. that “there were a number of fatalities,” citing Broward County officials, and that the shooter was not in custody, although authorities believed they knew who he was.

“This is a really bad day,” Nelson said.

The Broward County Sheriff’s Office said on Twitter that the shooter was still at large at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.

Earlier, the sheriff’s office tweeted that “there are reports of victims,” but did not say how many people were injured. Broward County Public Schools said on Twitter that the sound of gunfire broke out shortly before school was dismissed for the day, and that it received reports of “possible multiple injuries.”

The high school went on immediate lockdown, Parkland Mayor Christine Hunschofsky told NBC Miami. She did not have details on casualties or who the shooter was.

“It’s sad. It’s sad that these tragedies happen in our country,” she said. “Many of the students have been in touch with their parents. We have, many many parents out here.”

A parent of a student told the station that her son was hiding inside a closet at the school with classmates, and that teachers had told them not to leave the building.

FBI agents from the Miami division were en route, officials said, as were agents from the Miami Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

President Trump has been briefed on the incident and the White House was monitoring the situation, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said.

My prayers and condolences to the families of the victims of the terrible Florida shooting. No child, teacher or anyone else should ever feel unsafe in an American school.

– Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 14, 2018

Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., also tweeted that he was “monitoring the horrible unfolding situation in Broward County, Florida with reports of a shooting at a local high school.”

Florida Gov. Rick Scott was traveling to Broward County to be briefed by emergency management officials and law enforcement, and has been in touch with Trump and the Department of Homeland Security, his office said.

This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.