16-Year-Old Killed In School Shooting

Police say the student was killed in the cafeteria at at high school in Knoxville, TN.

Ambulance carrying Central High School shooting victim Ryan McDonald, 16, arrives at UT Medical Center.

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - A student fatally shot a 15-year-old classmate during a dispute Thursday at a Knoxville high school, police said, as other teenagers watched in horror as the victim clutched his chest and fell to the floor.
Police identified the victim as Ryan McDonald, a sophomore who
lived with his grandmother and had alopecia, a condition that left him bald and the target of endless teasing as a child.
"He tried to have a tough exterior, like a shield, to fit in," his uncle Roger McDonald said. "He was a good kid ... who was dealt some bad cards in life."
The shooting happened shortly after 8 a.m. at the Central High
School cafeteria, Chief Deputy Bill Roehl said, and the suspected shooter was taken into custody minutes later on a nearby street. The suspect and victim knew each other, Knox County School System
Superintendent Bill McIntyre said.
Jamar Siler, 15, was charged with one count of first-degree murder and was being held in a juvenile court facility, police spokesman Darrell DeBusk said. Silar had an initial appearance in Juvenile Court late Thursday, but his lawyer, public defender Mark Stephens, refused to discuss the case.
"This wasn't a shooting that was a random act," Roehl said. "It was an individual directing his aggression toward another individual, not the school or the students inside the school."
The cafeteria was a popular place to gather before classes started at 8:30 a.m., students said. Chad Griffin, 15, and Josh Matthews, 14, said that they were sitting about 10 feet away from the victim and talking when they heard a sharp noise.
Griffin at first thought someone had dropped a book and then looked around.
"He got shot and started walking and he was holding his chest. There was blood everywhere. And then he fell and his arm hit me,"
Griffin said.
Matthews said he thought it was a fake at first but then realized the shooting was real.
"I took off running and ran outside and called my mom," Matthews said.
Students in the cafeteria began crying and scrambling to leave, while others tried to get in the room, thinking they had missed a fight, witnesses said. Students began to gather around the victim, said freshman Jared Wohlford, 14. "Everybody started running out real fast saying, 'He got shot,"' he said.
The school, which has about 1,400 students, was placed on lockdown after the shooting. Classes were dismissed and students
were bused to a nearby church so they could be picked up by their

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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  • by Motley Again Location: Louisa, KY on Aug 25, 2008 at 02:02 PM
    Thou Shalt Not Kill would do nothing to stop me from killing someone if I wanted to. This is the same now that I'm an atheist as it would be if I were Christian like I was raised. In fact, I was probably more murderous as a Christian since I hated everyone different: atheists, secularists, homosexuals, muslims, buddhists, etc. Luckily, I haven't killed anyone because I am capable of empathy, which, apparently creationists are not since they need "THOU SHALT NOT KILL" up in their faces. Plus, the US is a secular nation. Secularists may be a minority, but there's a clause in the constitution that prohibits government endorsement of religion (which trickles all the way down to any state actions, i.e. that of a school board) because we are a nation where everyone is free to believe what they want without persecution. There are 2 billion Christians: you're not being persecuted. Get over yourselves, thanks.
  • by Motley Location: Louisa, KY on Aug 25, 2008 at 08:15 AM
    Hardy Har Har! Because school shootings never happened when we taught Bible in school AM I RITE? Terry, there is no god, so the problem can't be taking him out of schools. The problem is fundamentalist Christians teaching their children to grow up hating themselves and being restricted all of their lives. No masturbation, no sex before marriage, no lying, no cheating, etc. You should listen to some Bill Hicks! He has a good routine on the shooting in the 60s from that tower... "Where's the tower? Where's the gun? I was adopted by fundamentalist Christians when I was a kid *boom boom*"
  • by kymom Location: lexington on Aug 25, 2008 at 05:48 AM
    I totally agree with Terry. If the kids had to look at the words,"THOU SHALT NOT KILL" everyday, then maybe their conscience would eat at them and they would think twice about what they are doing. Taking the Ten Commandments out of the schools is when the school shootings all began. Why does everyone let a small percentage of people,who are by the way the minority, determine what goes on? Why can't the rest of us just tell them to shut their mouths and if they don't like it, don't look?! If you take God out of the schools, trouble comes in! Bring back the paddle to the principal's office! That'll straighten some people out! These kids need to be treated like the children they are!Society is letting the kids act a lot older than they really are! Giving them too much freedom! If they act like children, treat them like children!
  • by Terry Location: Kentucky on Aug 24, 2008 at 07:27 PM
    We should not be surprised! The Lord was removed from our schools years ago and when God's not allowed then Satan takes his place. Our children are being raised in a society where there are few consequences for wrong doing. I grew up in an age where if you did wrong, you got punished, at school and at home. We are reaping what we have sown. My heart goes out to the students' families. Lives there will never be the same.
  • by Steve Location: Lexington on Aug 24, 2008 at 06:13 PM
    What a sad society we live in. At the end of the story, it says "Students in the cafeteria began crying and scrambling to leave, while others tried to get in the room, thinking they had missed a fight, witnesses said." I can't believe they were rushing into this situation because they saw others rushing out and thought they had MISSED A FIGHT. What a bunch of worthless children being raised in our society. If watching a fight is a highlight of their lives, then their lives are miserable and worthless. Now, for the victim, who was teased miserably for being bald due to a condition, it's horrid that he had to live through all the taunting and meanness and hatred directed towards him by someone else's worthless children all his life, then to only have one of the aggressors he was probably scared of or threatened by his whole life decide he would shoot the kid too, since taunting him wasn't enough. The aggressor doesn't deserve a trial, just an execution. Again, what a sad society!
  • by My guess is... on Aug 24, 2008 at 04:53 PM
    my guess was made BEFORE the entire story was printed on this website. I already posted a comment to that effect but WKYT has not posted it. I made a guess based on the information that was first put out. You guys have to realize they will change the story on a website and not mention the fact that it was updated.
  • by Anonymous Location: Pikeville on Aug 24, 2008 at 05:53 AM
    Another prime example what is wrong with the youth today. Most parents are rasing their children without putting any fear in them. They get into trouble and what do they get alittle time out or a GOOD talking to. School officials have nothing to hold over childrens heads now days except for a few days off (time to sleep late and stay on the computers and stuff like that). Children need a little fear about getting into trouble, talking to isn't enough. I was whipped when growing up and it made me a better person for it. I had respect for others, I knew what was right and wrong and I had fear of my parents if I did something wrong. This fear did nothing to make me not love my parents but when I became an adult I understood what they had did for me and raised my children the same way. I have fine children who have respect and good morals. They are law abiding people who think before they do.
  • by Kris Walters Location: Mt.Orab Ohio on Aug 23, 2008 at 12:37 PM
    This is the bad part, 4 days into school and a kid already got shot in school. this is a bad sign and its just going to keep on happpening, nobody can stop it. nobody can keep it from happening. its sad though that everyone talks about how good their schools are, when if you look at it like i do, no school is safe. it doesnt matter where it is.
  • by William Location: seky on Aug 22, 2008 at 11:10 PM
    As I said before home schooling with computers.
  • by chad Location: Independence on Aug 22, 2008 at 08:56 PM
    Now you got it right! It was not enough for the killer to tease and abuse this poor kid but he had to take his life as well. I will await the whole story before further comment but this is totally sad!
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