Gunman Kills Nurse in 2nd Fatal School Attack in Massachusetts This Week

Gunman Kills Nurse in 2nd Fatal School Attack in Massachusetts This Week

A gunman barged into a school and fatally shot the nurse Wednesday before the principal grabbed the man’s shotgun and wrested it from his hands, police said. It was the second killing this week in a southeastern Massachusetts school.


On Monday, three teen-agers stormed into a classroom and fatally stabbed a student in front of his classmates at a school in nearby Dartmouth, about 40 miles south of Boston.


The suspect in Wednesday’s shooting, 42-year-old David Taber, entered the Albert Ford Middle School and corralled the principal, nurse and librarian into the principal’s office.

The man ordered them into the hallway, but shot the nurse, 52-year-old Carole Day, as she started to move. Principal John Tavares immediately grabbed the barrel of the 12-gauge shotgun and wrested it from the gunman, said Police Chief Michael Poitras.


Tavares later was treated and released at St. Luke’s Hospital for chest injuries.


Police had no motive for the attack.


″I think it’s scary. You’re even afraid to let your kid go to school,″ said Philomena Paiva, 35, whose son is in the seventh grade at the Acushnet school.


At a district court arraignment, Taber was ordered held without bail and sent to a state hospital for psychiatric evaluation. His attorney told the judge that Taber had a history of mental problems.


Authorities said Taber also apparently set fire to his home before going to the school.


Kurt Acucena, a 13-year-old seventh-grader, said he was in math class when he saw a van pull up. Then, he said, a man wearing a blue jacket with the hood pulled up entered the building carrying a gun.


Kurt said he went out to the hall to get a drink of water and heard the shot. ″I ran to my class and said, ‘Somebody’s been shot.’ And nobody believed me.″


None of the school’s 300 students was injured.


On Monday, 16-year-old Jason Robinson was stabbed to death in his social studies class at Dartmouth High School. Authorities have charged three juveniles, saying they were seeking revenge after a fight.


″And to think yesterday we had a big meeting here about school security,″ said Detective Sgt. Donald Medeiros. ″Then to have this happen in the next town over. It’s unreal. The whole area is just in a state of shock.″


Administrators said the Acushnet school would remain open Thursday and Friday, with counseling available for teachers, students and parents during and after school.