The mother of a 16-year-old girl who was killed in Friday’s mass shooting at a Texas high school believes the shooter targeted her daughter for refusing his advances.
Sadie Rodriguez, whose daughter Shana Fisher was one of 10 people killed at Santa Fe High School, said 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis had pursued her daughter for months before the deadly attack.
“He kept making advances on her and she repeatedly told him no,” Rodriguez told The Associated Press. “He continued to get more aggressive.”
A week earlier, Rodriguez said, her daughter stood up to Pagourtzis in class, embarrassing him.
In a Facebook post one day after her daughter’s death, Rodriguez expressed the need for teachers and parents to be more aware of teens’ mental health.
“How do u continue to shoot, after seeing one die before ur eyes?” she wrote. “His mental state was all kinds of fucked. please help to make teachers and students aware of there surroundings and the mental state of there students and peers.”
She described her daughter as “the most sweet and shy young lady” who “never hurt anyone.”
Pagourtzis, who was found armed with a shotgun and a .38 revolver, according to police, was arrested on charges of capital murder and aggravated assault on a public servant. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said the teen acquired the weapons from his father, who likely had them legally.
The deadly shooting, which left 13 others wounded, including a police officer, was the 16th school shooting this year, according to a count by The Washington Post. It was also the 10th since 17 people were killed in February at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. That shooting sparked a nationwide conversation and demonstrations about gun control in America.