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School shooting victim ‘brain dead,’ life support ending

This undated photo provided by the Willey family shows Jaelynn Willey, a teenager critically wounded by an armed student inside a Maryland school on Tuesday, March 20, 2018.

GREAT MILLS, Md. — A teenage girl who was shot when a classmate opened fire inside their Maryland high school is brain dead and is being removed from life support, her mother said Thursday.

Melissa Willey told news reporters Thursday night that her daughter, 16-year-old Jaelynn Willey has “no life left in her.” She said Jaelynn would be removed from life support during the evening, by the family’s decision.

The mother, holding a young baby, said that with the shooting, “On Tuesday … our lives changed completely and totally forever. My daughter was hurt by a boy who shot her in the head and took everything from our lives.”

The teen was shot Tuesday by 17-year-old Austin Rollins at Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County.

Rollins died after shooting Willey. A school resource officer got there within a minute and fired a shot at Rollins, but it’s not yet clear whether Rollins was killed by the officer’s bullet or took his own life.

The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday Rollins and the girl had been in a relationship that recently ended.

“All indications suggest the shooting was not a random act of violence,” police said in a statement.

Willey had been in critical condition at the University of Maryland Prince George’s Hospital Center. A fundraising page to help her family has raised more than $59,000.

A 14-year-old boy who was shot in the thigh during the encounter was released Wednesday from a hospital.

Attempts to reach Rollins’ family have been unsuccessful.

St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron credited Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill with preventing any more loss of life.

Cameron said Gaskill, a six-year veteran with SWAT team training, responded within a minute and fired his weapon simultaneously with a final shot fired by Rollins. The officer was unharmed.

On Wednesday, authorities said the Glock handgun used in the shooting was legally owned by Rollins’ father. In Maryland it is illegal for anyone under age 21 to possess a handgun unless it is required for their employment.