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St. Louis high school shooter carried out attack with gun confiscated just days prior

"While it is not yet clear when or how the suspect came to be in possession of the firearm after this incident, we can confirm that the firearm involved in this incident is the firearm used in the shooting Monday," police said in a statement Wednesday evening.

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Hannah Nightingale Washington DC
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Following Monday’s school shooting in St. Louis, it has been revealed that the firearm used by 19-year-old suspect Orlando Harris was taken away from him just days prior by authorities.

On Monday, a student and a teacher were killed and seven were injured after Harris entered Central Visual and Performing Arts High School with a rifle and began shooting.

According to the St. Louis Dispatch, Police responded to a domestic disturbance call at Harris’ home on October 15,

His mother had found a gun in the home and wanted it to be removed. Police determined that Harris was allowed under the law to have the firearm.

A person close to the family was contacted and the rifle went into his possession so it would be out of the home, police said. 

"While it is not yet clear when or how the suspect came to be in possession of the firearm after this incident, we can confirm that the firearm involved in this incident is the firearm used in the shooting Monday," police said in a statement Wednesday evening.

Michael Sack, interim St. Louis Police Chief, said that the Harris family is cooperating with the investigation.

Leading up to the attack, Harris’ family tried on numerous occasions to get him mental health care. 

According to the New York Post, the family has said that they sought help for his mental state and that he has been "several times.

"They were constantly in touch with the medical providers," said Sack at a Wednesday news conference. "They made every effort they felt that they reasonably could. I think that’s why the mother is so heartbroken over the families that paid" for his actions.

Whenever the family "noticed him, kind of, stepping out of line … they always worked to try and get him back on his medication, back into therapy, whatever it is that he needed," he said.

"Sometimes that’s not enough. Mental health is a difficult thing. It’s hard to tell when someone is violent and going to act out," Sack added.

Sack said that the serial number on the firearm used by Harris has been given to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives to trace, but added that it could be difficult to track if the firearm was sold from person to person.

Harris was discovered in the school barricaded inside a classroom. After shooting at responding officers, they shot back and broke through the door. When Harris pointed his rifle at officers inside the classroom, they fired several shots, killing him.

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