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UPDATE: Santa Fe Shooting Suspect’s Father Thinks He Was Bullied

Officials say they are tightening security at campuses when students return

 

The Latest on the Santa Fe high school shooting in Texas. 

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The father of a 17-year-old student accused of fatally shooting 10 people at a Houston-area high school says the teenager doesn’t own any guns and that perhaps his son was being bullied.

In a phone interview over the weekend with Greece’s Antenna TV, Antonios Pagourtzis said he wished he could have stopped the killing Friday at Santa Fe High School. His voice cracks as he describes how he told police to let him inside the school so his son could kill him instead.

Dimitrios Pagourtzis is being held on capital murder charges.

His father says he owns guns but that the boy doesn’t. He says he thinks someone might have hurt his son and that this could have prompted the attack. He says his son didn’t drink and never got into fights.

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The latest school shooting is unlikely to lead to significant new gun restrictions in Texas.

Gov. Greg Abbott begins hosting school-safety roundtable discussions Tuesday. There have been new calls to arm teachers and “harden” campuses against attacks in the wake of last week’s shooting at Santa Fe High School that left eight students and two teachers dead.

But few expect the meetings to result in a major push for gun restrictions in a state that has more than 1.2 million licensed handgun owners who can openly carry their weapons in public.

The discussions will start in Austin, and Abbott says they will include lawmakers, educators, students, parents, gun-rights advocates and shooting survivors. The first one features officials from districts that arm some teachers or contract with local police for security.

Santa Fe ISD officials say while they are anxious to have students back in their schools, they realize there are students, staff, and families who need time for grieving and mourning.

On Monday, officials announced students won’t return to classes until after Memorial Day on Tuesday, May 29th.

All teachers and support staff will return tomorrow Wednesday, May 23rd.  

Officials say they are tightening security at campuses when students return. They also have mental health support available throughout the district for students, staff, and faculty, for as long as there is a need– including a toll-free crisis hotline.

At a Monday press conference, Santa Fe ISD Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources Patti Hanssard said the community is grateful for the outpouring of support.

“Our district leadership, campus, students, staff, parents have been eager to help our families recover, we will be forever indebted to these individuals who have stepped up to help,” Hanssard said. 

More resources and information can be found on the school’s website including where people can make donations. That’s SFISD.org.

 

Below is a press conference with Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo discussing the Santa Fe shooting.

 

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