As I am wont to do when I post updates about a school shooting I always ask if anyone outside of the immediate area remembers this one? Even I had to read up on this one. I don’t know if that’s because I’m getting older or because there have been so many of these shootings in the past few years.
Anyway, back in September of 2017, then 15-year-old Caleb Sharpe entered into Freeman High School in Rockford, Washington, with two firearms. He ended up shooting and killing Sam Strahan. Strahan was reportedly a friend of Sharpe’s who was trying to talk Sharpe out of committing a school shooting.
Bullying was given as a motive early on in the investigation but once again a more likely scenario is that Sharpe is just another copycat with a Columbine obsession. It also didn’t help that Sharpe’s parents knew that Sharpe had the combination to their gun safe. More responsible gun parenting at its finest. One of the guns Sharpe took was his father’s military-style assault rifle with a full 30-round magazine to. While an assault rifle is not a fully automatic machine gun, it can still be fired rapidly enough to the point where it’s almost indistinguishable from one.
Yesterday, a judge ruled that Sharpe will be tried as an adult stating that Sharpe had carefully planned and executed the shooting. Unfortunately, Sharpe can not receive life without parole as the Washington Supreme Court has ruled that LWOP for teens is unconstitutional.
I would imagine before too long any jail time for teenage murdering school shooters will be ruled unconstitutional. Yet guns will continue to be afforded more rights than people.
UPDATE 7/24/2020: Sharpe’s trial has been scheduled for June of 2021.