In Extraordinary 911 Call, Employee Talks Down Georgia Elementary Gunman (AUDIO)

A 911 call released Wednesday reveals how an employee at a Georgia elementary school successfully talked down an alleged gunman during a tense standoff earlier this week.

Throughout the nearly-25 minute call, Antoinette Tuff, a bookkeeper at Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy in Decatur, Ga., spoke to both the operator and suspected gunman Michael Brandon Hill, who fired six shots in the school’s front office before surrendering to police on Tuesday.

At times, Tuff relayed what Hill, armed with an assault rifle and almost 500 rounds of ammunition, was saying.

“He said he don’t care if he dies, he don’t have nothing to live for,” Tuff told the operator. “He said he’s not mentally stable.”

Almost 15 minutes into the call, Tuff tried to defuse the situation by telling Hill about her own personal struggles.

“Don’t feel bad, baby. My husband just left me after 33 years…I got a son who’s multiple disabled,” she said.

By the end of the call, when police can be heard storming the office, Tuff made it clear that, despite her apparent poise under the extreme pressure, she was frightened.

“I’m going to tell you something, baby. I’ve never been so scared in all the days in my life,” Tuff said before breaking down in tears.

“You did great,” the operator told her.

Listen to the call, via The Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Tom Kludt is a reporter for Talking Points Memo based in New York City, covering media and national affairs. Originally from South Dakota, Tom joined TPM as an intern in late-2011 and became a staff member during the 2012 election. He can be reached at tom@talkingpointsmemo.com.
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