News 12 at 11 o'clock / Friday, Dec. 14, 2012
AUGUSTA, Ga. -- Three students were shot with a pellet gun during their lunch break, and it left some shaken up and others running -- but not away.
"I'm just glad it was a pellet gun. It could have been a real gun," parent Angelina Blue said.
The view from the woods next to Westside High School's practice field shows the shooter's perspective.
"During second lunch, they started shooting pellet guns," Ladarren Jones said.
It was unexpected pellet fire with an even more unexpected reaction.
"My fellow students got shot by the pellet gun while we was running. They were standing around while we was playing football, so we chased them," Jones said.
A split-second decision to defend their friends, and instead of running away, they ran toward the guys with the guns, not worried about their own safety.
"We're hunters, and when we heard the sound of pellet guns, we knew it was pellet guns. We were just worrying about just catching them. It's probably only a one-time reaction, but I don't regret doing it," Jones said.
For parents and teachers, an already scary situation made even worse after the massacre at a Connecticut elementary school just hours before.
"I think they heard about the situation in Connecticut which seemed to worry them a lot more. A mass shooting at an elementary school is simply horrific," Blue said.
Parents and teachers weren't the only ones who heard the news.
"We heard about the Connecticut shooting, so we got scared that there was somehting involved," senior student Crystal Dekalb said.
"After hearing the Connecticut story, I'm glad it wasn't nothing that serious because we didn't really have any way to save ourselves or be safe," Jones said.
The most damage here was a few cracks on some faculty windshields.
"When you look in light of that, that this incident was minor, but we would certainly rather err on the side of caution," Principal Dr. Debbie Alexander said.
"I'm glad we're all safe, but hopefully next time, there won't be a next time for this," Jones said.
The two suspects were chased all the way to the Fountain Head apartment complex but somehow managed to get away from students and Richmond County deputies.
Even though it was a pellet gun, the suspects could face some serious charges including bringing a gun on school property, which is a felony, and reckless conduct.