Nashville Metro Police have released body-cam footage showing law enforcement responding to the mass shooting at the Covenant School on Monday.
Heavily-armored police officers can be seen clearing hallways shouting “Metro police!” as they make their way through elementary school classrooms decorated with American flags and student cubbies.
The footage also included the lethal exchange between police Audrey Hale, a 28 year old former student at the school.
Six people were killed in the attack on the school before police were able to neutralize Hale whose motivations Metropolitan Police Chief John Drake said might stem from a sense of “resentment.”
“There’s some belief that there was some resentment for having to go to that school,” Drake told NBC News.
However, former school headmaster Bill Campbell remembered Hale as a normal third and fourth-grader. “It’s just an absolute tragedy what’s happened by the former student and what she did to the teachers and students,” Campbell said.
“I think about this student and our relationship at the time she was there, there was nothing extraordinary and unusual,” the former administrator told NBC News. “She was loved and appreciated like all of our students.”
Among the dead, were three nine-year-old students including a former pastor’s daughter from Park Cities Presbyterian Church located in Dallas.
“The Park Cities Presbyterian Church (PCPC) family is incredibly saddened by the unimaginable tragedy today at Covenant Presbyterian School in Nashville, TN. Covenant Presbyterian Church is a sister church of PCPC; many of our members have deep friendships and family connections there,” an official statement released on Monday noted.
Hale had reportedly messaged a friend, Averianna Patton, just before the impending attack chillingly confessing that she was planning on committing suicide and making national headlines.
“One day this will make more sense,” Hale wrote to Patton on Instagram. “I’ve left behind more than enough evidence behind. But something bad is about to happen.”
According to local police, Hale had thoroughly planned out the assault on Covenant School with detailed maps and surveillance of the premises.
“She targeted random students in the school,” the police chief added. “[W]hoever she came in contact with, she fired rounds.”
Initial reporting about the school shooting initially highlighted the unusual nature of a female mass shooter; however, law enforcement later clarified that Hale identified as a transgender man.
Officials “feel that she identifies as trans, but we’re still in the initial investigation into all of that and if it actually played a role into this incident,” Drake said during the interview.
Media outlets including the New York Times, USA Today, and ABC News raced to issue quick corrections for misgendering the mass shooter across social-media.
“There was confusion later on Monday about the gender identity of the assailant in the Nashville shooting. Officials had used ‘she’ and ‘her’ to refer to the suspect, who, according to a social media post and a LinkedIn profile, appeared to identify as a man in recent months,” the Times noted on Twitter following an earlier story highlighting the rarity of female mass shooters.
There was confusion later on Monday about the gender identity of the assailant in the Nashville shooting. Officials had used “she” and “her” to refer to the suspect, who, according to a social media post and a LinkedIn profile, appeared to identify as a man in recent months.
— The New York Times (@nytimes) March 28, 2023
USA Today issued a similar correction noting that its initial description of the shooter as a woman was based on incorrect statements by “Officials [who] had initially misidentified the gender of the shooter.”
Two of the three weapons used in Monday’s school shooting were legally purchased in Nashville law enforcement added.
The shooting was the deadliest to occur at an American school in nearly a year.