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Ohio school shooting suspect randomly fired, prosecutors said

February 28, 2012|By Michael Muskal

Ohio school shooting suspect T.J. Lane randomly chose the targets of his shooting rampage at a suburban high school, fired 10 shots from a handgun and was also armed with a knife, a prosecutor said Tuesday during a court hearing. 

Lane, 17, appeared as a juvenile at his first hearing before Geauga County Judge Timothy J. Grendell, who ordered the student held for his safety and that of the community. The judge could have released the boy to his family, but there was no objection to the continued detention from Lane’s attorney, Robert Fairinacci, or from relatives at the hearing.

Grendell gave prosecutors until Thursday to bring formal charges, and set the next hearing for March 6. The judge also set March 19 for a probable cause hearing if Lane is charged as an adult as expected.

The court hearing was televised, but the camera was focused only on the judge so that there was no image of Lane. Grendell told the media not to photograph the boy’s face and imposed a gag order on the attorneys at the prosecutor's request.

County prosecutor David Joyce told the court that the initial investigation showed that Lane was the lone gunman and fired in the Chardon High School cafeteria and in the hallways. He said the targets were chosen at random.

After his arrest Monday, Lane admitted to the shooting, Joyce said in court. 

Five students were injured in the attack about 7:30 a.m. Monday morning at Chardon High School.

Three students have died. One boy remains hospitalized and the only girl injured in the shooting was released Tuesday to her family, officials said after the court hearing. 

Moments before the hearing began, the U.S. House of Representatives observed a moment of silence for the victims of the shooting.

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