Who Is Austin Wyatt Rollins? Great Mills High School, Maryland, Shooting Suspect Identified

Updated: Police and witnesses on Tuesday reported yet another school shooting, this time at Great Mills High School in St. Mary's County, Maryland. The alleged gunman, who died in a shootout with an armed officer, was identified by police as Austin Wyatt Rollins, 17.

Rollins allegedly shot a 16-year-old girl, identified by family as Jaelynn Willey, and a 14-year-old boy, identified as Desmond Barnes, with his father's Glock semi-automatic handgun in the school hallway at around 8 a.m. Both victims were rushed to a hospital. Barnes was treated and released while Willey remained in critical condition.

Investigators were still looking into possible motives on Wednesday afternoon, but Sheriff Tim Cameron told reporters that he believed Willey had a previous relationship with Rollins. The connection, if any, between Barnes and the alleged shooter remained unknown.

"All indications suggest the shooting was not a random act of violence," Cameron said.

Local community members started donating to a YouCaring campaign dedicated to Willey and Barnes, raising thousands of dollars in less than 12 hours. On behalf of the family, Willey's uncle Timothy Cormier issued a statement asking for privacy.

"Jaelynn is an amazing young lady, whose peaceful presence and love of her fellow students and family is known throughout her Maryland-based school," Cormier said in a statement to Newsweek. "The second oldest of nine children, Jaelynn is not only a role model to her siblings, but also a dedicated student and member of her school's swim team. She also selflessly helps take care of her brothers and sisters each and every day, whether at home, or at the beach, one of her favorite places to be."

Cameron said that the entire shootout lasted "less than a minute" and that resource officer Blaine Gaskill and Rollins "fired simultaneously." It's unclear whether the suspect died of a self-inflicted wound or if Gaskill, who was not injured, fired the fatal shot.

Reports of the early morning shooting sent anxiety and fear rippling through the campus, which sits just 65 miles southeast of Washington, D.C.

"There was a loud sound and everyone started screaming and running," Mollie Davis, a student at the school, told Newsweek. "I was upstairs and heard everyone screaming. What I heard just sounded like a balloon pop."

Davis said she hid inside her math classroom, bunkered down with classmates while they waited for police to give them an all-clear. She didn't know who the shooter was but suspected that it was a student. Two weeks earlier, students at a nearby high school had been arrested for allegedly planning to carry out a shooting.

On March 24, activists and student survivors will join together for a nationwide march to pressure legislators to pass comprehensive gun control. Emma Gonzalez, a student survivor from the Parkland, Florida school shooting, tweeted her support to the students at Great Mills.

"We are Here for you, students of Great Mills," Parkland student activist Emma Gonzalez tweeted, "together we can stop this from ever happening again."

Last week, the students at Great Mills joined together for National School Walkout, a nationwide protest against gun violence.

This story has been updated with a statement from the family of Jaelynn Willey.

Who Is Austin Wyatt Rollins? Great Mills High School, Maryland, Shooting Suspect Identified | U.S.
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