* Rep. Tom Demmer (R-Dixon) on yesterday’s shooting at Dixon High School…
“The decisive actions taken by Officer Mark Dallas today prevented what could have been a tragedy on a massive scale at Dixon High School. I know I am joined by many in the Dixon-area and throughout the state in thanking him for his bravery; he is a true hero. His actions today also show the importance of school resource officers and the essential role they play in public safety by protecting students and teachers each and every day,” said Rep. Tom Demmer (R-Dixon).
* Illinois Education Association President Kathi Griffin…
“Our hearts are heavy with the news of another school shooting. The quick, brave actions of Dixon Police Department School Resource Officer Mark Dallas stopped the gunman and saved many lives,” said IEA President Kathi Griffin. “Today’s events will undoubtedly cause some to wonder if arming teachers will somehow be a deterrent, a way to keep our children and our schools safe. But that’s not what our educators have signed up for. It’s the job of a school resource officer, and we commend him for keeping our students and staff safe.”
A school resource police officer is being lauded as a hero for intervening when a former student at Dixon High School opened fire Wednesday morning near the school gym where students were gathered for a graduation rehearsal, authorities said.
The officer, identified by the city as 15-year department veteran Mark Dallas, shot and injured the gunman after the suspect fired at the officer while trying to flee, police said.
The suspect, identified as 19-year-old former student Matthew A. Milby, was taken into custody, and no one else was injured in the gunfire exchange, authorities said. […]
According to WGN-Ch. 9, a woman who identified herself as the gunman’s mother told reporters, “My son has been very, very sad for a long time.”
She said her son was bullied and ostracized at school, and was beaten up in October. She said she doesn’t know where her son got a gun, according to WGN.
* ABC 7…
Howell said Dallas ran toward the shots, coming face-to-face with Milby, a former student, holding a gun.
Milby ran away and out of the school. Police said he fired at Dallas when he tried to chase him down. That’s when the officer fired back, hitting and injuring Milby. […]
“I could not be more proud of the police officer and the way he responded to the situation. While shots were ringing out through the hallways of the school, he charged towards the suspect and confronted him head on,” Howell said. […]
Julie Milby, the alleged shooter’s mother, said her son was ostracized at school and left to finish his credits outside of class.
“I know that he’s been very sad for a long time,” she said. “Well, my kid is laying up at the hospital shot. Thank god they didn’t kill him, that’s a blessing. Thank god he didn’t kill anyone else.”
* CBS 2…
Julie told NBC that she did not believe he was trying to hurt anyone and suspects he was “thinking they were going to kill him.” She said her son had been sad for so long.
According to Julie, Matt was on the football team but had been kicked off for smoking marijuana. She also said kids had stolen from him and his friends stopped talking to him, so he felt isolated.
Julie grew up with Officer Mark Dallas and told NBC they saw each other while she waited outside of the school yesterday. She was waiting for her son like other parents were, at this point she had no idea her son was the shooter.
According to Matt’s mother, he was badly beaten by a 25-year-old in October and said other kids just watched. After being beaten, Julie says the principal, Dr. Grady would let him stay in his office.
Although several of his friends said he had not been to school in months, Milby was not expelled, as previously reported, did not drop out, and was eligible to graduate with his class, Superintendent Margo Empen said. She said she could not provide further details because of school privacy laws.
In fact, Milby went to the school this morning to pick up his cap and gown, his mother said.
Senior Caleb Carlson, 19, said he’s known Milby since middle school, when they were friends.
“I knew that he had quite a few guns,” he said.
* Gov. Rauner was asked about the shooting by Tom Miller of WJPF…
Tom Miller: It’s interesting because Governor I couldn’t help but see yesterday’s Dixon event without using the filter of the proposal in Springfield to remove police officers and replace them with counselors.
Governor Rauner: Yes that’s exactly wrong. It’s fine for schools to have counselors as well, being proactive to deal with mental illness health issues that’s good and appropriate. And I think that was also included in my public safety proposal. I said let’s free up local sales tax revenues so schools have that choice, if they choose to, to have a resource officer, a security trained police officer or person as well if they also want mental health professionals that would be great. I supported that as well.
* But that bill he referred to was changed before it passed the House…
State Rep. Chris Emanuel Welch, D-Westchester, said he amended his House Bill 4208 to take out some of the language that would have encouraged schools to phase out armed resource officers in favor of mental health professionals. Welch’s amended measure would create a new grant for schools “that would expand or create restorative justice programs, hire school psychologists, social workers and other mental health and behavioral specialists,” Welch said in floor debate Friday.