NARRATIVE TIME LINE OF EVENTS
11:49am - 12:08pm
- Suspects are in the office area.
- Sgt. Ester reports that Denver Metro SWAT has arrived on the east side of the school.
- The 911 call made by Patti Nielson from the library is terminated by the dispatch center since no more activity could be heard on the line.
- Jefferson County Undersheriff John Dunaway arrives at the command post and authorizes SWAT to make an immediate entry into the school.
- Deputy Byerly reports shots fired on the east side of the building.
- The fire sprinkler system alarm in the cafeteria is activated.
- Jefferson County Sheriff John Stone, on his way to Columbine High School, calls Jefferson County Commissioner and Board Chairman Patricia Holloway. He alerts her that gunshots are being fired at the south Jefferson County school and there are reports of students injured and possible hostages taken.
- Dispatch informs the command post that bomb squads from the Jefferson County and Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Offices are en route.
- Dispatch also confirms a live bomb at Wadsworth and Chatfield. “Repeat. A live bomb at Wadsworth and Chatfield.”
11:53am – 11:55am
- Law enforcement officers on the east side of the school report noises and shots coming from the school’s northeast side.
- Searle reports that Denver Police Department personnel are at the shed on the west side of the school and they have “long guns.”
- A two-hour 911 phone call (from 11:29 a.m. to 1:24 p.m.) from a school secretary and a school security officer hiding in the school’s main office reports shots fired in the office, into the ceiling and in the art hallway to the north.
- Dispatch gives the command post a description of one of the suspects: “Eric Harris, 5’10”, thin build, shaved blond hair, black pants and white T-shirt, light blue gym backpack.”
- Littleton paramedics transport student Stephanie Munson, shot in the ankle while escaping out the east main entrance, to Littleton Hospital.
- Klebold and Harris’ movements continue to be extremely random. The cafeteria videotape shows the gunmen coming back down the stairs and into the cafeteria. Klebold is holding the TEC 9.
- Television news announces reports of two gunmen at Columbine High School.
- Deputy Smoker advises dispatch that four down on the west side need to be evacuated.
- Two ambulances, responding to Gardner’s call for medical assistance on the south side, approach the south parking lot.
- Walker reports shots fired from inside the school.
- The cafeteria videotape shows Klebold and Harris standing in the cafeteria surveying the damage.
- The suspects walk back toward the kitchen area.
- Deputy Schwieterman reports an ambulance has arrived on the south side.
- Schwieterman, positioned by the west side athletic shed, reports that there are five victims outside on the southwest side of the school and gives directions where ambulances should come into the area to rescue them.
- Littleton Fire Department announces that its command post is set up at Leawood and Pierce.
- The suspects leave the kitchen area.
- Klebold and Harris leave the cafeteria and go upstairs to the library.
- The command post tells dispatch to request Channel 7’s news helicopter flying overhead to land in Clement Park in order to pick up a Sheriff’s deputy for an aerial survey of the school.
- An armored vehicle is requested to rescue the injured because the scene is “not safe for medical.”
- Uninterrupted media coverage about the shooting in progress at Columbine High School begins on local television channels.
- SWAT commands use of a Littleton fire truck to provide cover as the first Jefferson County, Littleton and Denver SWAT officers approach the school. Deputy Del Kleinschmidt, a Jefferson County K-9 team member assigned to SWAT, volunteers to drive the truck.
- A television reporter interviews the mother of a student who told her about gunmen dressed in black in the high school’s commons area. The station also reports that, according to information gleaned from its police scanners, the school is being evacuated.
12:02pm – 12:05pm
- Littleton Fire Department paramedics rescue Sean Graves, Lance Kirklin and Anne Marie Hochhalter as they lay wounded outside the cafeteria. Because the scene is not safe, law enforcement deputies and officers move in closer to provide cover for paramedics Mark Gorman, Monte Fleming and John Aylward and emergency medical technician Jerry LoSasso as they retrieve the victims.
- Gunfire erupts from the second story library windows above the cafeteria as the paramedics rescue the wounded students outside.
- Deputy Walker sees a muzzle flash from a library window and returns fire.
- Deputy Gardner fires three shots at the gunmen.
- Denver police officers also provide suppression fire to the library windows. This allows the paramedics to retrieve the three wounded teens. The fourth student, Dan Rohrbough, is determined to be deceased. The paramedics rush the living to medical attention.
- After the ambulances leave the scene with the wounded, the gunfire coming from the library windows ceases. No gunshots attributed to the gunmen are heard again.
- Gardner turns his attention to a group of 15 students huddled behind a vehicle in the parking lot just a car away from him. One at a time, he evacuates the students down the line of cars to the protection of the last car farthest away from the school and the shooters.
- _Other students begin to escape, some out a side door of the cafeteria, and the officers “leapfrog” them back to Gardner or other waiting deputies.
- A television news helicopter begins broadcasting aerial images of Columbine High School.
- Jefferson County crime lab is en route to the scene with its mobile crime laboratory unit.
- The first SWAT team, on foot behind a Littleton fire truck, arrives at the east main entrance to the school. Manwaring, leading the ad hoc team, splits the group into two teams and directs Jefferson County SWAT Deputy Allen Simmons to take his team into the school. It is estimated that at 12:06 p.m., Simmons’ team of five officers enters Columbine High School through the southeast doors. Manwaring will lead the second team, using the fire truck as a shield, to the west side where students are reported “down” and gunfire occurring.
- Television news coverage broadcasts images of the SWAT team outside the high school.
- Student Anne Marie Hochhalter is transported to Swedish Medical Hospital.
- Dispatch advises that a victim shot in the head is at the Caley/Yukon triage area.
- Deputy Walker asks dispatch to check on the status of the party on the roof.
- Shortly after that last gunshot is fired from the library window at law enforcement and paramedics, Harris and Klebold kill themselves.