The identity of the Nashville Covenant Christian school shooter has been revealed to be that of Audrey Hale, a biological female that identifies as a male.
The Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said on Monday that the individual who fatally shot at least 3 students and 3 adults at The Covenant School was 28 years old and was believed to be a former student.
Police Chief John Drake said during an afternoon press conference that the identity was confirmed to be Audrey Hale, “a 28-year-old female that lived in the Nashville area.”
Drake said that the investigation was ongoing, adding that Hale “does identify as transgender, yes.”
According to NBC News, three law enforcement officials who were briefed on the matter said that the individual responsible for the shooting was identified as Audrey Hale, a resident of Nashville. Drake said that a nearby vehicle provided crucial clues to identify the shooter involved in the incident. Although the doors on the campus are typically locked, the shooter managed to gain access through a side entrance, which is currently under investigation. Despite this, Chief Drake commended his officers for their swift action in confronting the shooter, stating that the situation could have been much worse.
A scanner from the local fire department initially stated that the shooter was a white male. Later reports indicated that the shooter was a woman. Law enforcement said the shooter lived in the area.
“How exactly she got in, at this point, is still under investigation,” Drake said.
“It could have been far, far worse,” he said. Hale was killed after an encounter with police.
The shooting comes as far-left extremists in the area have threatened to injure or kill lawmakers in Tennessee as revenge for the state banning the medical transitioning of minors, with threats having surged in recent weeks. Several now-deleted tweets from accounts suggested that Tennessee legislators should have their addresses released. “This is what genocide looks like,” one said, while another replied, “these people forcing youth to detransition have names and addresses.” Another said, “You let me know where I can get my hands on ricin then we’re in business.” Ricin is a deadly toxin that is found naturally in some plant seeds.
Earlier reports from officials had suggested that the perpetrator might have been a teenager.
The incident resulted in the deaths of three adults and three children. Police clarified that two officers out of a team of five were involved in engaging and shooting the suspect.
Nashville Police Public Affairs Director Don Aaron emphasized during a press briefing that there were no Metro Police personnel assigned to the private school operated by the church. Additionally, there is school footage that is currently being reviewed to aid in understanding the events that transpired.
“This is a church that operates a private school. There were no Metro Police personnel assigned to that school of any kind,” he added.
“There is video from the school that we are viewing now to try and understand what happened,” he said.
This is a breaking news story and will be updated.
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