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Oakland police arrest 1 in "heartbreaking" Skyline High graduation shooting

Eyewitnesses recount harrowing shooting scene at Skyline High
Eyewitnesses recount harrowing shooting scene at Skyline High 02:53

Police in Oakland on Friday confirmed that one person was arrested in a shooting at Skyline High School following a Thursday night graduation ceremony, an incident that Oakland Unified called "heartbreaking and absolutely unacceptable."

In an update posted to the Oakland Police Department social media accounts, authorities said they detained multiple individuals and arrested one person in connection with the shooting at the school. Authorities noted that additional suspects are still being sought.

Officers responded to Skyline High School at 7:45 p.m. Thursday after reports of the shooting. A preliminary investigation by officers determined that two groups of people got into a fight in the school's parking lot as people were leaving the graduation ceremony.

"We completely ducked flat and laid on our backs until we stopped hearing gunshots. And so we went into the main office," said Trayvon Aubry, who graduated Thursday from Skyline High.

Police said the altercation escalated and a gun battle broke out with multiple individuals getting injured by gunfire. Police also noted that officers initially located two individuals injured at the scene who were transported to an area hospital for treatment. Subsequent investigation determined there was a third shooting victim at an area hospital. Police said all three victims are expected to survive.

Aubry told CBS News Bay Area that  he first heard two shots and two to three more shots a short time later. 

"I was just hoping that my family was okay, because I was hoping it wasn't them or one of my friends. It scared the life out of me," he said.

Ethan Swope, another Skyline High graduate, said, "I'm going to try and not let it ruin the experience. The important thing is I was with family, I was with friends."

Ray Williams, a third Skyline High graduate, said Thursday's shooting brought back memories of another shooting that happened at the start of the school year. Three juveniles were arrested following the Sep. 5, 2023 incident, which took place on campus.

"We've done this before, it's honestly worse, cause like our families are here and they don't have experience with this, but we do," Williams said.

Aubry, who also witnessed the September shooting, said the incident was over a dice game.

The Oakland Unified School District also issued a statement regarding the Skyline shooting Friday.

"What happened after Skyline High School's graduation on Thursday evening was heartbreaking and absolutely unacceptable. The incident happened after the ceremony had concluded, and after many students, families, and staff had left the campus," the statement attributed to OUSD Superintendent Dr. Kyla Johnson-Trammell said. "Some people remained on the field wrapping up the celebration and some staff members were cleaning up, when the shooting happened. I want to appreciate the staff from Skyline and the District who were on site at the time and immediately responded to take control of this challenging situation until police could arrive."  

Johnson-Trammell also said that, "As a community, we must not tolerate violence, and instead work together to eliminate it in Oakland.  I know that many of us share this collective frustration and devastation, and that our hearts are with the victims of this incident, their loved ones, and every graduate and their extended community who attended the ceremony to celebrate this once-in-a-lifetime achievement."

Additional support staff was available to students, faculty and staff at Skyline on Friday in the wake of the incident.

Police investigators are actively looking for additional shooters and witnesses to the incident and are asking community members -- especially anyone who attended the graduation and has video and or photos of the incident to email them or contact the OPD Felony Assault Unit at (510)238-3426.

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