Student killed in school shooting at the hands of 12-year-old gunman

VANTAA, FINLAND – A school shooting in Finland has left one 12-year-old student dead and two others seriously injured, as per reports from the nation’s police. The suspect, also a 12-year-old student from the same school, was later apprehended in a suburb north of the country’s capital, Helsinki.

Law enforcement was alerted to the shooting at Viertola School at about 9 a.m. local time. A licensed handgun, reportedly owned by a close relative of the shooter, was used in the incident. As of yet, police have not disclosed any information about the suspected motive. The suspect now faces charges of murder and attempted murder.

Following the shooting, students remained in their classrooms as authorities advised people to steer clear of the school and remain indoors. Viertola Primary School, located 18 kilometers north of Helsinki, has approximately 800 students from 1st to 9th grade and around 90 staff members.

Finnish Prime Minister Petteri Orpo expressed his shock and sympathy towards the victims, their families, and others at Viertola school.

Although gun ownership rates in Finland are high due to a robust hunting tradition, school shootings are notably rare. Twice in the last decade, the country has witnessed such incidents.

In 2007, an 18-year-old student killed eight and wounded ten at his high school in southern Finland’s Tuusula before committing suicide. Just months following this incident in 2008, a 22-year-old student killed ten at another school and then killed himself. These incidents led Finland’s government to issue new guidelines on firearm usage.