Georgia Teacher Who Shot Himself Did It Intentionally, Officials Say
An Atlanta, Georgia-area teacher intentionally shot himself in a classroom last week, officials said.
Douglas County Sheriff’s authorities said that a Lithia Springs High School teacher shot himself in the head on Thursday morning, Aug. 17, before students arrived, WSB-TV reported.
“It is not believed there was any intent to injure anyone, other than himself,” said Douglas County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Sgt. Jessie Hambrick.
The teacher was identified as Jonathan Freeman, a math teacher of 18 years. He was airlifted to a hospital, and he’s now recovering.
“We are sad to say this is a personal matter that he brought to his place of employment. This incident doesn’t involve any matter related to his employment with the school system, or any issue he was having with an employee, student, or administrator at the school,” Hambrick said.
No student saw the shooting.
Officials are looking to possibly charge Freeman—regarding his gun. “This case will remain as an open case. The case revolves solely on the possession of a firearm on school property,” Hambrick said.
According to 11Alive, at 7:15 a.m., he pulled out a handgun and pulled the trigger, officials said.
Another teacher discovered Freeman as he stumbled out of the classroom. They called 911 and first responders were on the scene in minutes.
“The ethical thing to do is to let him focus on the healing process he is going through,” Hambrick told 11Alive.
Classes at Lithia Springs High School resumed Friday as planned. Counselors were on hand to help staff members and students.
According to his biography on the school’s website, he was named Teacher of the Year in 2014. He graduated from the University of Georgia in 1996.
Freeman was in the hospital in stable condition Monday, said Douglas County School System spokeswoman Karen Stroud, AJC.com reported.
“The people who worked directly with him are extremely distraught about the incident and could not believe that he was the person,” she said.