17 People Killed, 50 Others Wounded After Teen Gunman Goes on Shooting Rampage at His High School in Crimea

At least 17 people, mostly teenagers, were killed and 50 others were wounded Wednesday when a student went on a shooting rampage at his high school in Russian-annexed Crimea, Russian authorities said.

Russian investigators identified the gunman as 18-year-old Vladislav Roslyakov. They said he fatally shot himself after the attack in Kerch, a city in eastern Crimea. Russia seized the Crimea region from Ukraine four years ago.

Initial reports described the attack as involving explosives, with possibly terrorist motives.

Russian investigators opened a terrorism probe into the attack, but later changed it to a murder case.

“A preliminary examination of the dead shows they suffered from gunshot wounds,” Russia’s investigative committee said in a statement. “The majority of them are teenagers.”

There were conflicting reports about what took place. Russia’s anti-terrorism committee initially said an explosive device was to blame for the attack on the vocational high school, attended by adolescents between the ages of 15 and 19. It said a bomb was planted in the cafeteria.

President Vladi­mir Putin expressed his condolences to the families of victims. “It is clear that a crime took place. The motives and scenarios of this tragedy are being studied,” he said at a meeting with Egyptian President Abdel Fatah al-Sissi in the Black Sea city of Sochi. He then asked for a moment’s silence.

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SOURCE: The Washington Post, Amie Ferris-Rotman