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New Parkland shooting 911 calls released: 'They're all bleeding'

Two people were dead in her class, the girl whispered on the phone to police. Others were certain to die."Plea...

Posted: Mar 15, 2018 8:47 PM

Two people were dead in her class, the girl whispered on the phone to police. Others were certain to die.

"Please. Please. There are people here. They're all bleeding," said the girl, sobbing. "And they're going to die."

Her haunting words were similar to those in dozens of calls flooding dispatch centers in the Parkland, Florida, area on February 14.

Frantic parents called 911 for information about the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Was it a hoax? Unfortunately not. Dispatchers apologized for not having more information. Help was on the way, they said.

The calls, like those released by the Broward County Sheriff's Office last Thursday, depict uncertainty and fear in the first chaotic moments after a former student opened fire at the school, killing 17 people.

In more than a dozen 911 calls to the Coral Springs Police Department, a neighboring city, desperate parents can be heard relaying information to 911 dispatchers after exchanging text messages or speaking with their panicked children inside the school.

Tell them to stay where they are, dispatchers responded. Keep phones on vibrate mode, they instructed. Stay calm and quiet.

The callers' names were not released, and Coral Springs Police did not immediately respond to questions about the fate of those heard in the calls.

The release of the calls Wednesday coincided with the nationwide walkout of thousands of students from class for 17 minutes -- one minute for each of the students and staff members killed exactly one month ago -- to demand stricter gun laws.

It also came on the day a state court judge entered a plea of not guilty on behalf of accused shooter Nikolas Cruz at arraignment. A Broward County grand jury indicted the 19-year-old gunman last week on 17 counts of premeditated murder in the first degree and 17 counts of attempted murder in the first degree.

Student walkouts sweep the US: Live updates

The calls released so far, along with snippets of police radio traffic and security video, detail the inability of first responders to communicate effectively and their confusion in tracking down the shooter. Florida Gov. Rick Scott has ordered an investigation into the police response.

'It's my neighbor. He's dead. Oh my god'

Here are excerpts from the 911 calls received by Coral Springs police on February 14:

A freshman called police from a first-floor classroom. She cried uncontrollably, describing bullet holes in the walls. Gunfire is heard in the background.

"Honey, I'm really sorry that you're going through this, but I'm here with you," the 911 operator said. "Stay quiet."

"There's a kid, I think he's dead. I think he's dying."

"I know honey. I'm getting help to you."

One girl cried that a student who was shot in the head had already died.

"It's my neighbor," she cried. "He's dead. Oh my god."

Anguished parents pleaded for information.

"Ma'am right now we're dealing with a lot of calls coming in," the dispatcher said. "I really have no information for you. I apologize."

A dispatcher told another mother the same thing, then added, "Do not go to the school."

"I just want to know if it's a false alarm at Douglas High School?" the mother of yet another student asked.

"No, it's not."

"Oh, my god!"

"We have reports of a school shooting. We're on the way."

"Please help! Please help!" one young woman, crying, tells the dispatcher in another call. "A shooter!"

"Is anybody injured?"

"Yes, yes, a lot of blood ... please, it's real, it's real -- please help us!" the young woman cries before the call cuts off.

A teacher can be heard whispering to her 25 students to stay down while her 911 call was still ringing.

In the minutes-long call, she tells the dispatcher there are gunshots outside room 1216. A student is down. She's taking cover under a desk.

"All the students are here. We're on the floor."

"Is he breathing?" the dispatcher asks of the wounded student.

"No. It's happening so fast. ... He's twitching and there's blood all over."

The room fills up with smoke, the teacher says. A windowpane on the door is shot out.

"I have another student hit," the teacher whispers.

"He's by your room," the dispatcher says. "Everyone be quiet. He's around the area. He's close by to your room."

The teacher says she hears shouting outside the room.

"I see a policeman," she says in a barely audible voice. "They're kicking in the window and opening the door."

"Who's coming in, the police or the shooter? Is that the police with you?" the dispatcher asks repeatedly.

There is no reply from the teacher.

"OK, they're running out," the dispatcher says finally.

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Data is updated nightly.

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We'll be staying hot and dry today with big impacts to your air quality. Smoke from active wildfires will result in unhealthy to very unhealthy air quality in our region, and will also keep our high temperatures somewhat in check. Cooler temperatures will finally return for your weekend.
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