LACEY, WA -- A government teacher is being hailed as a hero after tackling a 16-year-old student who fired two shots into the air Monday at a Washington state high school, police and students said.
No one was injured after the teen shot toward the ceiling in the school commons before classes began at North Thurston High School in Lacey, about 60 miles southwest of Seattle, authorities said. The shooter is in custody.
Brady Olson, who teaches Advanced Placement government and civics, stopped the shooter, according to school officials and students.
"If anyone in the school were to do something like he did, I would think it would be him," said Teia Patan, 17, who saw the shooting but did not see Olson tackle the gunman. "He's one of those people who watch over kids."
Patan was swept into a classroom and then escorted out of the building after the shooting. He described his high school as a nice, calm school, with no bullying.
"When it was happening, I first thought it has to be fake," said Patan, a senior in one of Olson's civics classes.
District spokeswoman Courtney Schrieve told The News Tribune newspaper that she also heard reports that Olson took down the gunman.
"He's a very large guy, he's a very popular teacher, and I can see him doing that," Schrieve said.
Patan said a friend of his reported talking to Olson after the shooting but didn't offer any more details.