NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) — On Monday, March 27, seven people, including the shooter — later identified as 28-year-old Audrey Hale — were killed in a shooting at The Covenant School in the Green Hills neighborhood of Nashville.
As police continue their investigation into the shooting, including the search for a motive, here’s what we know about the violence that unfolded.
The Metro Nashville Police Department identified the six victims as Evelyn Dieckhaus (9), Hallie Scruggs (9), William Kinney (9), Cynthia Peak (61), Dr. Katherine Koonce (60), and Mike Hill (61).
Each of the six victims is said to have died from multiple gunshot wounds, according to Davidson County Medical Examiner Feng Li, who performed the autopsies on Tuesday.
Chief John Drake of the MNPD said by the time he arrived on scene, the three children had already been transported to the hospital. However, he found the other victims spread out in different places throughout the building.
Koonce was found in a hallway and Chief Drake said it’s possible she may have run toward Hale, but couldn’t say for sure. Hill was reportedly killed when Hale shot through the side door, having been hit by the bullets and shattered glass, according to police.
Audrey Hale was reportedly armed with two assault-style rifles and one handgun.
At a press briefing Tuesday afternoon, Drake said there is no information to indicate Hale was specifically targeting any one of the six victims, but rather that the location itself appeared to be the target.
Police said investigators tracked down Hale’s address and searched the home, where they reportedly found detailed maps drawn of the school, including surveillance and entry points, as well as a manifesto.
Chief Drake said Hale legally bought seven firearms from five different gun stores in the area. Three of those guns were used in Monday’s shooting and investigators believe Hale hid several weapons in the home the shooter shared with parents.
Hale was also reportedly under a doctor’s care for an “emotional disorder,” and the parents assumed Hale had only owned one gun, and that it had been sold.
The chief added there are no laws in place that would have prevented Hale from having weapons, even with certain mental health issues.
Police also searched Hale’s vehicle, which was left in the school parking lot, and found “additional material written by Hale.”
Hale attended The Covenant School at one time and had no criminal history, according to police.
Police initially gave unclear information on Hale’s gender. For hours, police identified the shooter as a 28-year-old woman and eventually as Audrey Hale. Later, the police chief said that Hale was transgender. After the news conference where this information was shared, police spokesperson Don Aaron declined to elaborate on how Hale identified.
In an email Tuesday, police spokesperson Kristin Mumford said Hale “was assigned female at birth. Hale did use male pronouns on a social media profile.”
Nashville School Shooting: Timeline
Metro police said the shooting began at 10:13 a.m. as Hale drove a Honda Fit to the school and shot through a side door of the school, before heading to the second floor, firing multiple shots.
The police department released video Monday night showing Hale pulling into the parking lot and shooting through the school doors to gain entry.
The surveillance footage shows Hale, holding an assault-style rifle, traversing through the school and looking into multiple rooms around 10:20 a.m.
According to police, officers went into the school building and ran toward the sound of gunfire. Two officers met Hale on the second floor and fired fatal shots. Those officers have since been identified as Officer Rex Englebert, a four-year MNPD veteran, and Officer Michael Collazo, a nine-year MNPD veteran.
On Tuesday, Metro Police released body-worn camera video from the two officers.
According to police, both Englebert and Collazo are trying to decompress and make sense of the whole situation. Chief Drake said he also spoke with President Joe Biden. The White House said the president also reached out to Englebert and Collazo, thanking them for their bravery and quick response to the shooting.
Photos released by police show a bullet hole in a squad car windshield, while others show the school’s side doors completely shot out, and windows shot out from the second story of the school. Police said Hale fired shots from the second floor at arriving officers.
Tennessee Governor Bill Lee took to Youtube Tuesday evening to address the mass shooting.
In his address, Gov. Lee mourned the loss of the six victims, saying, “some parents woke up without children, children woke up without parents and without teachers, and spouses woke up without their loved ones.”
The governor also mentioned how two of the victims were “family friends for decades.”
Following her visit to Ohio Wednesday to meet with military families, first lady Dr. Jill Biden attended a public vigil in downtown Nashville to celebrate the lives of the six victims killed in the shooting.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.