Two suspects in Tuesday's shooting outside Graham-Kapowsin High School were in custody Wednesday, and one more unidentified suspect was on the loose, the Pierce County Sheriff's Department said.
Two neighboring schools also were in lockdown after the shooting but were reopened earlier than the high school and their students were released, said Bethel School District officials.
A woman who claimed to be the mother of one of the victims wrote on Facebook that her son was shot four times and insisted that her son was not a gang member, 'but an innocent bystander along with the other boy that was shot'. However, Ed Troyer, Pierce County Sheriff's Department spokesman told Seattle Times both the boys were expected to survive. But before the fight started, someone in the getaway vehicle fired multiple rounds, hitting the two students.
Deputies said the shooting occurred just off school grounds, and the victims ran back onto campus. One student was found near the football field and another in a locker room, reports say.
Witnesses described the suspects as black males who reportedly fled the scene in a green automobile, possibly a Chevrolet Impala or similar in appearance.
The shooting took place at around 2:30 p.m. local time (5:30 p.m. EST), according to a report in an ABC-affiliated television station, KOMO-TV. The shooting may be gang-related, and the suspects aren't believed to be students at the high school.
The high school campus is alongside the campuses of Frontier Middle School and Nelson Elementary School.
"Our thoughts and prayers are with the families and students involved with this shooting today". "All remaining students on campus are secured with deputies, considered safe as security sweep is ongoing".
Graham-Kapowsin is part of the Bethel School District.
The Pierce County Sheriff's Office appealed for the public's help in identifying the two wanted suspects and tweeted that Crime Stoppers was offering a reward for information.