Students track shooting at Ohio high school on Twitter

In a time of crisis, students at CHardon High School turned to Twitter to update family and friends, after a gunman fatally shot one student and wounded at least four others. 


Fernando Alfonso III

Internet Culture

Published Feb 27, 2012   Updated Jun 2, 2021, 8:51 pm CDT

At least one student is dead after a shooting Monday morning at an Ohio high school, leaving thousands of students and community members to search Twitter for answers, comfort, and support.

Before 8 a.m. EST, police received reports of shots fired inside Chardon High School in Chardon, Ohio, reported MSNBC. At least five students were shot before the lone gunman, “believed to be a 17-year-old student,” was taken into custody by police, reported CBS News.

According to the Daily Beast, the suspected shooter is student T.J. Lane, who wrote a violent Facebook letter on Dec. 30, 2011. The letter reads like a piece of fiction set in a world called a “sandbox for all the wretched sinners.”

That castle, she stood just to do all she could to keep the peasents (sic) at bay, not the enemy away. They had no enemies in their filthy orgy. And in her, the castles every story, was just another chamber of Lucifer’s Laboratory. … How improper, how rude. However, they shall not mind the mud on my feet if there is blood on your sheet. Now! Feel death, not just mocking you. Not just stalking you but inside of you. Wriggle and writhe. Feel smaller beneath my might. Seizure in the Pestilence that is my scythe. Die, all of you.

Like the recent shooting at Virginia Tech, the Chardon High School episode turned ordinary students into citizen journalists, tweeting live updates from within the school. While these updates have proved invaluable for the mainstream media, high-intensity situations like these can lead to errors and speculation. For example, about two hours ago, @Young_Joob tweeted three alleged photos of Lane holding a knife and two handguns.

Here’s a look at some of the tweets from Chardon High School students. Storify compiled by the Daily Beast.

Photo from The News-Hearald

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*First Published: Feb 27, 2012, 5:57 pm CST