$5,000 reward offered for tips in school shooting

Friday, October 26, 2007

BRAZIL -- Federal authorities have issued a $5,000 reward for information about last week's shooting incident at Van Buren Elementary in northeastern Clay County.

Chief Deputy Rob Gambill informed The Brazil Times (sister newspaper of the BannerGraphic) Thursday afternoon of the reward for information in the case after being contacted by authorities at the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

At 12:48 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18, several shots were fired from a black van traveling northbound on Harmony Road (County Road 200 East) at Van Buren Elementary.

One of the shots, possibly a high-caliber bullet, pierced both glass cafeteria door windows on the west side of the school building and lodged in the ceiling.

The bullet injured no one, but flying glass from the door injured a custodian.

Schools around the county went on lock-down as officials began investigating the case.

A majority of the tips received during the investigation recently have indicated to officials that the suspects' van has primer flat-black paint, no side windows and was an older style.

No one has been able to provide information about the vehicles' make or model. Recently, two witnesses have come forward with information about a black van seen traveling southbound on Harmony Road with four people inside on Oct. 17.

"The van had its doors open and some of the people inside were sitting on the edge of the doors with their feet hanging outside of the vehicle," Gambill said.

Officials are looking for information from any witnesses that may have seen this van or contact information of the people who may have been inside the vehicle so they could be ruled out as suspects.

The two suspects involved in the Oct. 18 shooting have been described as white males and are considered dangerous by officials at this time.

Because of the time factors involved in the case, Gambill said federal authorities hope issuing a $5,000 reward will encourage tipsters to provide accurate information in the case that will lead to the identification, capture and conviction of the individuals involved.

To report information in this case, contact Clay County Sheriff's Chief Deputy Rob Gambill at 812-446-2535 (ext.5) or Indiana State Police Master Trooper Sam Stearley at 812-299-1153.

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