Arapahoe High School junior Emily Evans, right, and her mother Cristina hug while visiting a makeshift memorial bearing the name of wounded student Claire Davis, who was shot by a classmate three days earlier, in front of Arapahoe High School in Centennial, Colo.
(Photo: Brennan Linsley, AP)
The teen who launched Friday's shooting spree at a suburban Denver high school was armed with 125 rounds of ammunition and three incendiary devices and may have planned to attack people in numerous rooms throughout the building, local authorities said Tuesday.
Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson said Tuesday that before entering Arapahoe High School, 18-year-old senior Karl Pierson had written the Latin phrase "Alea iacta est,'' which means "the die has been cast" on his forearm, as well as letters and numbers that are linked to the school library and four classrooms.
Pierson, armed with a pump-action shotgun recently purchased at a local sporting goods store, entered the school at about 12:30 p.m., seeking a school librarian and debate team manager who was his intended target. After the librarian was alerted and fled the building, Pierson shot classmate Claire Davis at point blank range in the head before taking his own life.
Davis, 17, remains in critical condition at Littleton Adventist Hospital.
Robinson said Pierson entered the building with three types of shotgun shells, including buckshot and slug rounds - some in bandoliers slung around his chest and waist. He also carried three "functional'' Molotov cocktails and a machete in a backpack.
Pierson managed to fire just five rounds before turning the weapon on himself as a school resource officer closed in on the school library. The incident last just 80 seconds.
Police said the phrase and numbers and letters written on Pierson's arm are an "indicator to investigators of the shooter's plan."
Investigators are trying to determine whether Pierson planned to attack specific students and staffers in the classrooms and library and if he had help.
Arapahoe High students are scheduled to resume classes Thursday.
Contributing: KUSA-TV in Denver.