Devon Erickson, the 18-year-old accused in the fatal shooting at a Colorado charter school shared social media posts that were critical of President Trump and Christians, but heaped praise on former President Barack Obama.
One student was killed and nine others were injured when Erickson and he and another underage suspect allegedly opened fire inside a K-12 school on the afternoon of May 7. Kendrick Castillo, 18, was fatally shot, and eight others were hospitalized. Several of the shooting victims have been released, and one was upgraded from serious to fair condition on Friday.
The two suspects — 18-year-old student Devon Erickson and 16-year-old Alec McKinney — will appear in court next week to hear the charges against them. They are both students at the school and face murder and attempted murder charges.
Devon Erickson was a well-known bully who joked about shootings and threatened other students for years, a former friend said. Kevin Cole used to go to STEM School Highlands Ranch, where one student was killed and eight others injured Tuesday in a shooting. Two suspects are in custody and will appear in court next week to hear the charges against them.
One of those alleged shooters was Devon Erickson, 18, who was once a friend of Cole’s. “They couldn’t believe that he would actually do it, but they weren’t entirely surprised that he did,” Cole said of the suspect’s friends.
He would enter the classroom and say, “When the pencil hits the floor I’m going to start shooting.” Then, he would spend the rest of class sporadically dropping pencils, Cole said of the suspect. And sometimes, the “jokes” were more like threats.
“He would just get really close and kind of hunch himself over your shoulder as you were sitting down, and he would just whisper in your ear ‘don’t come to school tomorrow’ and just kind of crack a smile and walk back to his seat,” Cole said.
Devon Erickson not only posted anti-President Trump messages on Facebook, but shared pro-Obama posts from left-wing Facebook page “Occupy Democrats.”
It was just three days before the last day of school, and students inside the English classroom were relaxing during the last period of the day watching “The Princess Bride” when one of their classmates walked in late and pulled out a gun.
“The only thing he said out loud to the students was, ‘Don’t you move,’” said Nui Giasolli, an 18-year-old senior who was in the class at the time.
In that moment, she recalled, Kendrick Castillo, a gentle teenager fascinated by cars and engineering, lunged to stop the gunman and was shot dead. Eight other students were wounded in the shooting at STEM School Highlands Ranch on Tuesday afternoon, which the authorities said was carried out by two fellow students.
Castillo’s friend, Joshua Jones and two classmates saved lives when they tackled one of two people behind the Colorado mass shooting that killed a young hero and wounded eight others.
Jones pinned the shooter with his body until police arrived, according to Lewis. He suffered gunshot wounds to his left calf and hip.
Jones is at home recovering, his family insisting that he use his crutches. He vows to ditch them for his May 20 graduation, according to Lewis. Jones always thought he wanted to become an EMT but now he’s certain, Lewis says. The teenager would like to go on a Mormon mission before his EMT training.
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