School Shooting Victim in a Coma

Claire Davis didn't know gunman, police say

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Dec 16, 2013 12:03 AM CST | Updated Dec 16, 2013 7:53 AM CST

(Newser) – The 17-year-old girl shot in the head in Friday's Colorado school shooting is in a coma and fighting for her life, her family says. Claire Davis "remains in critical condition. She is stable, but is in a coma," the family said in a statement. "The first responders got Claire to the right place, at the right time, and the doctors and hospital staff are doing a wonderful job taking care of her." The county sheriff says Claire was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time when gunman Karl Pierson walked into Arapahoe High School seeking to attack the debate coach who benched him, reports NBC. Police don't believe Pierson even knew Claire.

Investigators are still trying to determine what went on between the debate coach and Pierson, who took his own life seconds after shooting Claire, the Denver Post reports. Classes at the high school, where more than a thousand people gathered for a vigil yesterday, have been cancelled today. Friends and family members describe her as an outgoing, athletic girl who loved horses. "She was just a very sweet girl. She's really smart," a classmate tells CNN. Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, who has asked the nation to pray for Claire, credits security measures put in place after the nearby Columbine High School shooting in 1999 with preventing the shooting from having been much worse, reports the AP.

Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson holds a picture of Claire Davis during a briefing at Arapahoe High School.
Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson holds a picture of Claire Davis during a briefing at Arapahoe High School.   (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski)
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