School shooter Andrew Golden killed in car crash 21 years after deadly attack
A man who was 11 years old in 1998 when he and a pal shot and killed five people at an Arkansas middle school died in a car crash over the weekend, police said.
Drew Grant, 33, who had legally changed his name from Andrew Golden, died Saturday night when his Honda CRV collided head-on with a Chevrolet Tahoe on Highway 167, about 100 miles north of Little Rock Ark., local TV-station KAIT reported.
The driver of the second vehicle, 59-year-old Daniel Petty was also killed in the crash and three other people, including two adults and a child, were injured and taken to hospitals, State Police said. Cops didn’t say what vehicle they were in, how badly they were hurt or who was responsible for the crash.
Arkansas State Police spokesman Bill Sadler said law enforcement is working under the premise that Grant and Golden are “one in the same.”
On March 24, 1998, Golden and his then-13-year-old friend Mitchell Johnson set off a fire alarm at Westside Middle School in Jonesboro Ark., and shot at people as they evacuated.
Killed were two 12-year-olds, Paige Herring and Stephanie Johnson, 11-year-olds Brittney Varner and Natalie Brooks and a teacher, Shannon Wright.
The baby-faced shooters were tried as juveniles — meaning their court records were sealed — and were expected to stay in custody until they turned 21, in accordance with Arkansas law at the time.
Golden was released in 2007 and eventually moved to Jackson, Missouri. Johnson was set free in 2005.
In 2017, victims’ families were awarded $150 million in damages by a Craighead County Courthouse judge.
Relatives of the slain teacher, Mitch and Zane Wright, said they felt conflicted about news of Goldens’ death.
“The news of Andrew Golden’s death today fills our family with mixed emotions as I’m sure it does with the other families and students of the Westside shooting. Mostly sadness,” they said in a statement to the station. “To his family, we are so sorry for your loss.”
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