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#BreakingNews Shooter at a Middle & High School in Perry, Iowa Leaves at Least One Dead and More Injured!

Police respond to Perry High School in Perry, Iowa., Thursday, Jan. 4, 2024. Police say there has been a shooting at the city's high school.(AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Just days into the new year and on their first day returning to school, students in Perry, Iowa were scrambling for their life.

Students were finishing up their first round of practices and entering for the day at Perry Middle and High School when they heard what seemed to be gunshots just before 8AM this morning.

Rachael Kares, an 18-year-old senior, was wrapping up jazz band practice at 7:37 a.m. — she had just looked at her watch — when she and her bandmates heard what she described as four gunshots, spaced apart.

“We all just jumped,” Kares said. “My band teacher looked at us and yelled, ‘Run!’ So we ran.

Police respond to Perry High School in Perry, Iowa., Jan. 4, 2024. Andrew Harnik/AP

Heavy police and medical presence was seen at the high school, about 40 miles northwest of downtown Des Moines in Dallas County. Streets for several blocks were barricaded, dozens of law enforcement from across central Iowa were on scene and a medical helicopter was seen landing at the school at about 8:30 a.m.

Parents started arriving at about 8:50 a.m. to find their students. City spokesperson Chris Cohea said the elementary school nearby was locked down and all students there were being kept in their rooms.

A suspect has been identified but police are not giving further details on who that person is or what their motive might have been.

Two teachers said Dan Marburger, the principal of the high school, was shot.

"I work in the school ... and two of my three children were supposed to be in the high school at that time," said Holly Killmer, a teacher for Perry Middle School. "How do you wrap your mind around sending them back into that environment? How do they do that? It's just so traumatic."

Killmer said students took shelter at Perry Lutheran Homes, an assisted living community near the school.

There are reports that one of the victims of today's shooting has died but the authorities are not revealing that victim's identity.

The FBI's resident agent at its Des Moines office has responded to the scene to assist the Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation, the FBI said. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is also on scene.

Perry is located in the suburbs northwest of Des Moines.


Authorities have now identified the person killed as a sixth grade student. The shooter has also been identified and is reported to be dead as well.

The suspect, a student at the school in Perry, died of what investigators believe is a self-inflicted gunshot wound, an Iowa Division of Criminal Investigation official said. Authorities said one of the five people wounded was an administrator, later identified by his alma mater as Perry High School Principal Dan Marburger.

Authorities identified the shooter as Dylan Butler, 17, and provided no information about a possible motive. Two friends and their mother who spoke with The Associated Press said Butler was a quiet person who had been bullied for years.

Authorities said Butler had a pump-action shotgun and a small-caliber handgun. Mitch Mortvedt, the state investigation division’s assistant director, said during a news conference that authorities also found a “pretty rudimentary” improvised explosive device and rendered it safe.

The suspect’s motive is being investigated and authorities are looking into “a number of social media posts” he made around the time of the shooting, Mortvedt added.



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