WASHINGTON — A 15-year-old boy was arrested on charges of shooting two students outside a charter school in Northeast D.C. Wednesday morning.
Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) officers responded to a report of a shooting around 10 a.m. near the IDEA Public Charter School in the 4500 block of Lee Street Northeast.
When officers arrived at the location, they found two teenagers shot. Police Chief Robert Contee said one of the teens was shot in the stomach, and the second was shot in the arm. Both victims were taken to a nearby hospital and were conscious and breathing. The teens are expected to survive their injuries.
The IDEA Public Charter School was placed on lockdown for several hours Wednesday.
Police said the shooting happened after one student arrived at the school not wearing their proper uniform early Wednesday morning. A school official offered to help the student with a proper outfit, but the student declined.
About 15 minutes later, two other students arrived at the school and tried to walk past a security officer who was operating a metal detector wand. When the officer challenged the two boys about being checked, they decided to leave the school.
Contee said the three students got into a fight outside the school, and the 15-year-old brought out a weapon and began to open fire. Both the students were struck.
The 15-year-old suspect was taken into custody in connection to the shooting.
"This is a very unfortunate situation," Contee said. "It's very tragic that we are seeing firearms in the hands of young people that we should not have them and as a result of that, we have two young people suffering from gunshot wounds."
Contee pleaded for parents to talk to their children and asked that city leaders reconsider having school resource officers in every DCPS building.
"Somebody's child is in the hospital as a result of reckless gun violence in our city and we have to make sure that there's accountability for that,” Contee said.
The chief said as of July 1, the department was down to down to 60 school resource officers, and that number continues to decrease.
"I think incidents like this really underscores the importance of having our school resource officers who are able to really interact with young people in the schools," Contee said.
A second shooting took place earlier in the morning in Southeast D.C. that sent a juvenile to the hospital. The victim's identity was not released, but he was described as an "older teen of high school age" by police.
IDEA Charter School declined to comment when contacted by WUSA9. Contee said he didn’t recall any recent incidents involving students and gun violence at the school.
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