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17-year-old charged with killing classmates in Ohio school shooting

TJ Lane has been described as “not well” by prosecutors after the deaths of three pupils on Monday.

TJ Lane is led from court earlier this week
TJ Lane is led from court earlier this week
Image: Mark Duncan/AP/Press Association Images

A 17-YEAR-OLD PUPIL at a high school near Cleveland, Ohio has been charged with the murder of three of his classmates in a gun attack earlier this week.

TJ Lane has admitted to police that he opened fire on a group of students sitting at a cafeteria table, prosecutors said yesterday.

Students were set to return to class today at the 1,100-student Chardon High School, about 30 miles east of Cleveland.

Charges filed in juvenile court accuse TJ Lane of killing three and wounding two others in the shooting. He’s charged with three counts of aggravated murder, two counts of attempted aggravated murder and one count of felonious assault.

Prosecutor David Joyce said Lane, who attends an alternative school for students who haven’t done well in traditional schools, admitted taking a .22-calibre pistol and a knife to school and firing 10 shots at a group of students.

No motive has been determined. Joyce has said that victims were selected randomly and called Lane someone “who’s not well.”

Children convicted of juvenile crimes in Ohio are typically behind bars only until they turn 21 in the most serious cases. But Joyce has said he plans to charge Lane as an adult, meaning he could face life in prison without parole if convicted of similar adult charges. Minors are not eligible for the death penalty in Ohio.

Lane’s attorney, Robert Farinacci, could not be reached for comment on the charges. A message was left at his office.

Earlier Thursday, students had gathered around a courthouse square gazebo, quietly singing their alma mater before marching by the hundreds to their reopened school, holding hands and linking arms.

“I’m just scared for everybody, and I don’t know how everybody is going to act going back into school,” said freshman Theodore Rosch, 16.

Friday also marked the start of a series of memorial services for the slain students.

Assistant football coach Frank Hall has been credited with chasing the gunman from the school. In this emotional video he described his last moments with the teenage victims:

CNN/YouTube

More: One dead and four wounded in Ohio high school shooting>

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