OLATHE, Kan. — The results of an investigation into a shooting inside Olathe East High School reveals what happened March 4.

The Johnson County District Attorney’s Office determined School Resource Officer Erik Clark feared for his life, took reasonable actions during the shooting, and was justified in shooting the student suspect.

Clark was shot four times. One of the bullets hit his body camera, destroying it. The other three bullets caused three gunshot wounds, according to the district attorney’s report.

The report states assistant principal Dr. Kaleb Stoppel suffered two gunshot injuries, and was likely hit by bullets fired from Clark’s weapon. One bullet hit him in the thigh and the other in his forearm.

Jaylon Elmore, 18, who is charged with attempted capitol murder for shooting Clark was also injured. According to the report, bullets hit him in his abdomen and left thigh.

The district attorney’s investigation reinforced reports that the shooting began as a rumor that a student had a gun inside Olathe East High School.

Stoppel and a female assistant principal identified Elmore as the subject of the rumor and pulled the teenager out of class. The two administrators escorted Elmore to the office, and texted the school resource officer to join them.

Stoppel and the other assistant principal told Elmore they needed to search his backpack, but the teenager refused.

According to the investigation, the escalation and shooting happened in a matter of seconds shortly after Clark arrived at the office.

The report states Elmore stood up when the assistant principal asked again to search his backpack. Elmore swung his backpack from his back to his chest and started shooting.

The female assistant principal said Elmore fired three shots at Clark in point-blank range before he could respond.

“He just started shooting at me,” Clark told investigators, according to the report.

Clark also said he felt the impact of the bullets hit his body and thought he was going to die. That’s when the report says Clark pulled his gun and returned fire.

During the gunfire, Stoppel tackled Elmore and they fell to the floor. Clark told investigators he holstered his gun once Elmore was on the floor because it was clear he was no longer a threat.

Clark then began to treat his own injuries and give instructions to staff on how to treat Elmore’s
injuries as emergency crews arrived.

Clark and Stoppel were treated and released from hospitals the same day as the shooting.

Elmore spent weeks in the hospital before being transferred to jail. He is scheduled to be in court again in August.

The Olathe School District is conducting its own review into the shooting. It has not released its findings at this point.

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