Omaha Police have released more information about Wednesday’s shooting at Millard South High School that claimed the life of an assistant principal and wounded the principal.
The gunman, 17-year-old Robert Butler Jr., was found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in his car about one mile from the school. Omaha Police Chief Alex Hayes confirmed today the weapon used in the shootings belonged to the suspect’s father – an Omaha Police detective.
“The firearm used did belong to Robert Butler Senior,” Hayes said. “It was put away in a closet in a room and we believe he got access to it when his father left the house for approximately 40 minutes.”
Butler was a recent transfer to the school. He was suspended by the assistant principal and sent home earlier Wednesday morning for a weekend incident where Butler was cited for driving his vehicle on the football field and on the school track.
Chief Hayes says Butler’s actions have shocked everyone involved. “He was not exhibiting any signs, he had no past history of mental health problems and there were no indicators that he was going to commit this act prior to it happening,” Hayes said. Shortly before the shootings, Butler posted an apology on Facebook for the “evil things he was about to do.”
The assistant principal, Vicky Kaspar, died from her injuries last night at an Omaha hospital. Today would have been her 59th birthday. Millard School District spokesperson Amy Friedman says Kaspar was a dedicated educator.
“She gave that job everything she had,” Friedman said. “She really cared about the kids and I can’t even believe she is gone.” Police say Kaspar was shot three or four times in the upper torso as she sat behind her desk. Principal Curtis Case ran to Kaspar’s office and was shot at least twice in the back and hip. He remains hospitalized.
“He’s kind of a quiet leader, a calm presence,” Friedman said of Case. “He is so energetic and he’s there because he cares about kids.” Chief Hayes says it is not believed Butler planned a mass shooting. He was in the school for less than two minutes and fired seven rounds. As he left the school office, Butler fired the gun wildly down a hall.
By Terry James of the Nebraska Radio Network