Tue. May 28th, 2024

Police In Tennessee have identified the victims in the private Christian school shooting Monday that left three 9-year-old Nashville students and three adults dead.

The victims were identified as Evelyn Dieckhaus, Hallie Scruggs, and William Kinney, all 9 years old, and adults 61-year-old Cynthia Peak, 60-year-old Katherine Koonce, and 61-year-old Mike Hill.

The shooter, 28-year-old Audrey Hale, identified as transgender and had no previous criminal record, according to the chief.

Drake said his investigators are working on a possible motive but he declined to reveal that on Monday afternoon.

“There’s right now a theory that we may be able to talk about later but it’s not confirmed,” the chief said.

Asked specifically if Hale’s identity could have factored into the killer’s motive, Drake said, “There is some theory to that, we’re investigating all the leads.”

Hale was heavily armed, according to the chief, who said the shooter had two AR-style weapons and a handgun.

Two of those three weapons were legally obtained in the Nashville area, the police chief added.

Hale was confronted by five officers and two of them opened fire, killing the attacker, authorities said.

A car near the shooting scene helped police determine who the shooter was.

“There was a vehicle that was nearby that gave us clues as to who she was,” Drake said.

Investigators were combing through Hale’s home, he said.

Police tactical units were spotted using a grenade-like device to get inside the residence, which is listed as Hale’s residence.

“This is a great family and it’s a tragedy,” a neighbor said.

There were no answers on Monday afternoon at multiple phone numbers listed for Hale’s mother and brother.

Investigators are also looking into how Hale got into the school. Doors are usually locked on the campus, officials said.

“How exactly she got in, at this point, is still under investigation,” Drake said.

The chief praised his officers for taking on the shooter immediately.

“It could have been far, far worse,” Drake said.

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By Buffy Gunner

Independent Journalist + Business Owner | Lover of all things true crime. Mantra: Only YOU can be YOU. | Los Angeles Born | buffygunner@illicitdeeds.com