On January 4, 2024, a tragic shooting occurred at Perry High School in Iowa. A 17-year-old suspect fatally shot a sixth-grade student and wounded five others, including at least one school administrator. The suspect died from what is believed to be a self-inflicted gunshot wound. The shooting took place on the first day back from winter break, before the formal Perry High School schedule had started, resulting in fewer students and faculty in the building. The incident is currently under investigation, with no clear motive identified yet.
The response to the shooting was swift, with the first officer arriving on the scene about seven minutes after the alert, and approximately 150 officers responding within the hour. All students were reunited with their parents within two hours of the incident. The community has been deeply affected by this event, with the governor of Iowa expressing sorrow and the White House acknowledging the tragedy as another act of senseless gun violence.
This incident marks the first Perry High School shooting in the United States for the year 2024 and adds to the long history of school shootings in Iowa. The Perry community, with a population of around 8,000, is situated approximately 40 miles northwest of Des Moines. The high school had been recognized for its academic excellence just last month.