John Klang, the principal of Weston High School in Cazenovia, Wisconsin, is shot and killed by 15-year-old student Eric Hainstock on September 29, 2006. The incident takes place amidst a spate of school violence across North America, including a shooting rampage at a Canadian college on September 13 and a hostage situation at a Colorado high school on September 27.
Hainstock, who had recently had been given a disciplinary warning by his principal for bringing tobacco to school, took guns from his parents’ home in the small Wisconsin farming community of Cazenovia and brought the weapons to school. Before classes began on the morning of September 29, Hainstock pointed a gun at a teacher, but the weapon was grabbed away by a janitor. The student then ran into the hallway where he encountered the principal and shot him several times. Klang, who managed to wrestle Hainstock to the floor and move the gun away, died a few hours later. Hainstock was detained by other students and school personnel. He was apparently upset by a disciplinary warning he’d received from Klang the day before the shooting for bringing tobacco to school and also angered that teachers hadn’t stopped other students from bullying him. In August 2007, Hainstock was found guilty of first-degree intentional homicide and sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 30 years.
On September 13, two weeks before the violence in Cazenovia, Kimveer Gill, 25, went on a shooting rampage at Dawson College in Quebec, Canada. One female student was killed and 19 others were injured before Gill turned the gun on himself after being shot by police. Then, on September 27, drifter Duane Morrison, 53, took six female students hostage at Platte Canyon High School in Bailey, Colorado. Morrison sexually assaulted some of the students and later shot and killed 16-year-old Emily Keyes when a SWAT team burst into the room where he was holding her and another student. Morrison then shot himself in the head and died at the scene. School violence continued when less than a week later, on October 2, milk-truck driver Charles Roberts, 32, killed five girls at a one-room Amish schoolhouse in Nickel Mines, Pennsylvania. Roberts turned his gun on himself and committed suicide when police arrived.