PARKLAND (CBSMiami) – Information is still coming in following the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland.
Authorities are still working the very active scene at the school, where police were seen evacuating students in small groups.
Additionally, Broward Sheriff’s Office confirmed that the suspected shooter had been taken into custody.
Broward Sheriff Scott Israel has confirmed at least 17 people have been killed and BSO is saying at least 14 more are injured.
Jim Gard, a math teacher at Stoneman Douglas Elementary joined CBS4 from inside the school to describe the events.
“I was in a class with my students and our fire alarm went off,” he said. “We were about to evacuate and as we did some of the kids heard shots go off and we heard ‘code red’. Six kids managed to get back in the room. About 20 minutes later we realized it was really real.”
The shots were close enough that Gard and his students heard them clearly. Fortunately from Gard’s students, the gunshots were not in their building.
“We definitely heard them,” Gard said of the shots. “We just heard them outside [our classroom]. Now I found out they were in the building next to mine.”
Gard explained that the school had a fire drill earlier Wednesday morning at around 9:30 a.m.
Then when he heard the alarm go off again, this time during the afternoon, he began the fire drill process again.
Shortly after they began to evacuate, the school called a code red.
“We had a code red from our administration that said no movement, all doors have to be locked, get back in the classroom, don’t let anybody in, even if they’re banging on doors,” Gard explained.
At the time of the interview, which was just after 4 p.m., it had been about ninety minutes since Gard and six students had locked themselves in the classroom.
“I’ve talked to one of their parents. They’ve all be in contact with their parents,” he said.
Gard said that despite the shooting, the students have been very calm.
“The lights are off, just in case.”
The school had not yet had a drill for a code red situation, but Gard thinks that one was in the works.
“We had a couple hour workshop on this [kind of situation] so we’re extremely well versed on this,” he said. “The kids are well versed, everyone knows where to go, what to do. We’re very well trained.”
Despite the situation, Gard said that he and his students never panicked and kept things as relaxed as they could.
“We’re staying as calm as possible,” he explained. “The kids here are fine, I’m fine and we’re just gonna wait for the police to come get us. I want to make sure all these guys get out safely.”
Gard said he was reviewing emails from other teachers who were communicating how many of their students each had in their classroom.
“We’re hoping for the best for as many kids as we can.”