Security guard says district failed to heed warning signs prior to shooting at Araphahoe High School

Posting: Claire Davis should not have died

CENTENNIAL, Colo. - A security guard placed on administrative leave following the shooting at Arapahoe High School says the district ignored warning signs prior to the shooting.

Cameron Rust wrote in lengthy posting on Facebook that he can not remain silent any longer.

He said he and another guard heard four shots go off before they confronted the gunman in the library.

He wrote on Facebook: “The shooter pointed his gun at us and paused for us to approach. If we would have been armed we could have stopped him at this point.”

Last month, Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson told 7NEWS that the murderer fired six shots total.  He said the second shot was the one that struck and killed Claire Davis.

Rust said Davis should not have died.

“When a student or any individual is on the ‘radar screens’ of school administrators, they need to act upon it, no matter how small they view the threat…” Rust wrote. “Karl Pierson was a known threat for a long time, he should have gotten the necessary help and appropriate resources should have been involved.”

The Facebook post outlines what Rust believes were the warning signs.

--"The security team reported to Administration that Karl was looking up guns, on his computer, in the school cafeteria. Administration came back and told the security team it was Karl’s personal computer and he can do what he wants."

--"Administration makes comments such as 'We will read about that kid (Karl) in the news someday, it just won’t be at Arapahoe High School.'"

--"Karl began using the word 'comrade.'"

--"Day before the incident, Karl was sent home due to anger outburst at another teacher."

--"The majority of things reported on Karl were never recorded in his school file."

--"The security team was in the process of going outside the school Administration to bring the above issues to the public’s attention, but was unable to prior to the shooting."

“A kid threatening a teacher, caught looking at guns – on the internet – in the school cafeteria, calling individuals comrade, drawing questionable symbols on his school work and having uncontrollable anger outbursts should have been investigated and given a plan to help. What more does the school administration think they need?"

He went on to write, “Is Arapahoe High School administration responsible for Karl’s choices? No!  Are they responsible for their lack of action? Yes!

Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson issued a short statement in response to questions about the Facebook posting:

“From the initial stages of the on-going investigation, Mr. Rust was the subject of interviews conducted by the Arapahoe County Sheriff’s Office.  Our investigators plan to re-interview him in the future, as well as numerous other individuals, as part of the on-going investigation into the tragedies associated with the December 13, 2013 incident.  The critical responsibility of determining the truth, established by facts and evidence, is our key focus and absolute responsibility to the community and to the Davis family.  That responsibility will be accomplished in a complete and thorough manner. 

“There will be no further comment regarding this matter, as this point in time, as we will not be distracted from our critical responsibilities of the on-going investigation, nor will we tolerate any effort to divert our attention or obstruct our investigative responsibilities.”

Littleton Public Schools did not return a phone call seeking comment, but did sent a letter to parents.

That letter said in part: “The events of December 13 are still fresh in the hearts and minds of many. Recently there has been a lot of communication within our community. Some of these discussions are taking place online and are being reported through newspapers and TV stations. This is to be expected. Much of the conversation, however, is based on inaccurate information, rumor, and innuendo. I would encourage all Warriors to wait for the sheriff’s investigation to come to a close before drawing conclusions. In a press release yesterday, the sheriff pointed out that his department is still in the midst of a complete investigation. As such, LPS cannot participate in public discussion of what occurred. The sheriff is the spokesperson for the investigation and is the only accurate source for information. I ask that we keep LPS strong by respecting the privacy of all in our community. Doing so will preserve the honor and integrity of our schools. We will not allow others to distract us from the important work of teaching and learning. I will continue to keep you updated of information the district can provide.

“I also want to reiterate our full faith and confidence in the administrative team at Arapahoe High School. They have handled this situation with professionalism, caring, and integrity. The Arapahoe community is healing and moving forward.”

Rust told our partners at the Denver Post that he came forward with the Facebook post “in order to get my emotional and mental turmoil to calm down a little bit” and to give students the answers they need to heal.