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Wis. students chatted with gunman to keep him calm

Nov 30, 2010 6:31:00 AM - thestate.com
Trapped in their classroom with a student gunman, a group of terrified Wisconsin high schoolers worked desperately to keep their captor calm by chatting and laughing with him about hunting and fishing.

The 15-year-old gunman eventually shot himself as police stormed the room at Marinette High School hours later Monday evening, but his 23 hostages emerged unharmed. Student hostage Zach Campbell said the gunman seemed depressed, but he didn't think he meant them his classmates any harm.

"I don't know why he did that," Campbell said. Six of his good friends were in the class, Campbell added.

Authorities also said they did not know what might have motivated the boy. Police said he fired three shots before they broke down the door, but it was unclear what he was trying to hit.

The gunman was taken to a nearby hospital. Authorities have declined to release his name and his condition was unknown early Tuesday.

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