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6th-grade student killed, 5 others wounded in Iowa school shooting

The wounded included four students at Perry Middle School and High School, as well as a school administrator.
Posted at 10:04 AM, Jan 04, 2024

A sixth-grade student was killed and five others were wounded in a shooting at a school in Iowa on Thursday. 

The wounded included four students at Perry Middle School and High School, as well as a school administrator. 

The shooting was first reported around 7:30 a.m. Dallas County Sheriff Adam Infante said the first officer responded within seven minutes.  

Responding officers reportedly located the shooter, 17-year-old Dylan Butcher, lying on the ground with an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead at the scene. 

Mitch Martin of the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation said the gunman was armed with a pump-action shotgun and a small handgun. In addition, officers found an improvised explosive device, Martin said. 

"The state fire marshal and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives rendered the device safe," Martin said. 

Police are looking into social media posts the shooter made around the time of the shooting. Investigators believe the gunman acted alone. A motive has not been identified. 

Thursday was the first day back for students after winter break.  

The shooting happened as the political world turns its attention to Iowa. The state will host the first contests in the 2024 presidential election. The Iowa caucuses will take place on Jan. 15. 

Republican presidential candidate Vivek Ramaswamy had a campaign event scheduled in Perry on Tuesday.

"Pray for the community in Perry, Iowa this morning," he said in a post on X. 

Nikki Haley also reacted after learning about the shooting. 

"No parent, student, or teacher should have to wake up and face news about a school shooting," she said. "My heart aches for the victims of Perry, Iowa and the entire community."

Iowa student describes escaping school shooting
Police respond to the scene of a school shooting in Perry, Iowa, on Thursday, Jan. 4, 2024

Iowa student describes escaping school shooting

Scripps News spoke with a student who was present in the building at the time of the shooting.