Posted on September 29, 2022

6 Injured in Oakland School Shooting, Police Say

Kellen Browning et al., New York Times, September 28, 2022

Six people were shot on Wednesday at a school campus in Oakland, in a burst of gunfire that erupted minutes before hundreds of students were scheduled to be dismissed for the afternoon.

The shootings — which left two adult victims hospitalized with life-threatening injuries and panicked scores of families who arrived to retrieve students only to find the campus in lockdown — came amid a rash of gun violence in the Northern California city, where the authorities have recorded at least eight gunshot deaths in the past nine days.

Police said all of the victims were over 18 and had “some affiliation” with Rudsdale Newcomer High School, one of four programs at the East Oakland school complex. But they did not immediately specify whether those who had been injured were students, school workers or bystanders and said they were still searching for the gunman.

Darren Allison, the assistant chief of the Oakland Police Department, said that “other individuals” might have been involved in the shooting, which began at about 12:45 p.m. He did not say whether the shootings had been targeted or random. Four other victims had been treated at local hospitals and were either released or expected to be discharged soon.

The Oakland authorities said the Police Department had investigated 360 assaults with a firearm this year, compared with 465 incidents by this time last year, a 23 percent reduction, and homicide rates have fallen slightly in the past year. But crime has long been an issue in economically depressed neighborhoods, including East Oakland. Alarm has risen in recent months among parents in the school district, which voted in 2020 in the wake of social justice demonstrations to disband its school police department and replace it with an alternative school safety plan.

“It’s a lot to process — our community, our parents, are feeling the weight of so much trauma,” said Treva Reid, an Oakland City Council member who represents the campus area.

The shooting was among more than 130 that have occurred this year at schools across the nation, including more than 30 that have resulted in injuries or deaths, according to a New York Times analysis of databases compiled by Education Week and the Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security. The deadliest was the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that claimed the lives of two adults and 19 children in May.

Oakland has already had a shooting this school year, in August, in which a 13-year-old boy was injured by the accidental discharge of a gun a 12-year-old student had brought to another East Oakland campus.

Libby Schaaf, the Oakland mayor, said Wednesday afternoon on Twitter that what had occurred on the campus “shocks the soul — our schools are sanctuaries for our children.”

“The unbridled access to firearms in our country is inexcusable,” she added.


The shooting occurred at the King Estate complex, which includes the headquarters for Sojourner Truth Independent Study; Bay Area Technology School, a charter program that serves students in grades six through 12; Rudsdale Continuation High School; and Rudsdale Newcomer High School.