Noblesville suspect recorded video of guns day before school shooting; attorneys read apology: ‘Sorry to Ella and Mr. Seaman’

The 13-year-old Noblesville shooting suspect recorded a video the day before he opened fire inside Noblesville West Middle School, prosecutors revealed Monday.

Posted: Nov 5, 2018 2:12 PM

NOBLESVILLE, Ind. (WTTV) – The 13-year-old Noblesville shooting suspect recorded a video the day before he opened fire inside Noblesville West Middle School, prosecutors revealed Monday.

According to our media partners at the IndyStar, the nearly two-minute video included a .45-caliber handgun and a .22-caliber handgun with a suppressor.

“Tomorrow’s Friday, you know what that means,” the boy said in the video, according to prosecutors. “I have to take other people’s lives before I take my own.”

Details of the video came to light during a Monday juvenile court hearing in Hamilton County. Prosecutors said the 13-year-old came to school on May 25 with the weapons in his backpack stored the backpack in his locker.

During his seventh-period class, taught by Jason Seaman, the boy took a quiz and finished early. He asked to be excused, went to his locker and grabbed the backpack. He then went to the restroom with the backpack, removed the weapons and returned to class.

He opened fire with the .22-caliber handgun, striking Seaman, who threw a small basketball at him in response. Seaman was standing next to Ella Whistler, who had a question about the quiz.

As the 13-year-old continued firing, an eighth-grade teacher passed by and saw the commotion. The teacher called the school office and requested a resource officer before calling 911.

Whistler survived after getting shot seven times. Seaman was shot three times in the process of stopping the attack by tackling the teen.

Later in the hearing, the suspect’s mother took the stand. She praised Seaman for taking quick action, saying he saved several lives that day, including her son’s.

“(His father) and I can’t thank you enough,” she said.

The mother said the morning of May 25 started like any other school day. Her son was looking forward to an upcoming band concert. She told the court that the family keeps guns in the home and considered them responsible gun owners. The boy’s father taught her son about gun safety, though the mother admitted she herself didn’t know much about guns.

The firearms were kept in a gun safe in the basement, next to where the teen played video games like Call of Duty. Photos taken after the shooting showed the gun safe unlocked, with the keys still hanging.

The teen’s defense attorneys read a statement in court on his behalf. In it, he apologized to Whistler and Seaman.

“Sorry I’m not a very good writer. If I could, I would take it back,” the boy wrote in the statement. “Sorry to Ella and Mr. Seaman. Ella, I’m sorry for the pain I’ve caused you.”

He thanked Seaman for protecting his classmates and saving his life. He said he will “accept any consequence” for what transpired. His attorneys are asking the court to send him to a residential program than a juvenile facility.

After the hearing, the case will then go into disposition, which is the juvenile court equivalent of sentencing. No disposition ruling was expected Monday.

The worst-case for the suspect would be getting sent to a juvenile detention facility, but the judge could also order the teen to serve community service, spend time in a mental health treatment center, or serve probation.

If the teen had been charged as an adult, he would have faced 11 counts, including attempted murder and aggravated battery. But his case cannot be heard in adult court because under current Indiana law a child who is 13 can only be waived to adult court if his attempt to commit murder “is actually successful,” according to Hamilton County Prosecutor D. Lee Buckingham.

Someone as young as 12-years-old can be tried as an adult for murder, but the statute has been interpreted to not include attempted murder, he said.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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