updated 1/4/2007 5:06:47 PM ET 2007-01-04T22:06:47

A teenager refused to tell police why he allegedly shot and killed a fellow student at Henry Foss High School, saying, "I can't tell you why, I don't want it in the news," according to a probable cause statement filed Thursday.

Douglas Chanthabouly, 18, pleaded not guilty to one count of first-degree murder and was ordered held on $1 million bail at a Pierce County Superior Court hearing. He was charged in the death of 17-year-old Samnang Kok, who was shot near a row of lockers just before classes were to begin Wednesday.

The probable cause statement, written by county Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Ed Murphy, said Chanthabouly "did not know Mr. Kok, but knew of him." Witnesses told police that Chanthabouly pointed a handgun at Kok, said, "What's up?" and fired a shot into his face, Murphy wrote. Police believe the shot was fired from no more than a foot away.

The shooter stood over the body and fired twice more, hitting him in the lower left side and left buttock, the statement said.

The charge came as uneasy students returned to Foss High amid a stronger security presence Thursday. Though fearful of their safety, and apprehensive about whether there might be a retaliatory attack, several said they wanted to be with their friends to discuss the shooting.

"I feel OK, but I don't feel safe anymore," said Dmitriy Svezhentsev, 16, who decided with his parents that it would be best to return to school.

There were police cruisers in the parking lot as students arrived for the delayed 10 a.m. start of school. School district spokeswoman Patti Holmgren said Tacoma police provided a handful of officers to patrol the school, in addition to the district's four security officers.

"It's to show the kids a presence, so they feel safer," Holmgren said. "The kids are going to be going to their usual classrooms, to talk about it, and how well they did yesterday. Teachers will talk about how we mourn for the victim and his family, but these are survivors: How do we move on? How do we heal? We're trying to be positive and move forward."

The shooting happened just before the first period bell rang at 7:30 a.m. Wednesday, the day classes resumed after the holiday break. Teachers herded students into classrooms and the gymnasium as Kok lay dying in a hallway. The shooter bolted out a set of double doors.

About two hours later, police arrested fellow student Chanthabouly a few blocks away.

Following a sleepless night of mourning, the victim's family said Thursday they planned to attend the hearing. His mother, Ry Sou, hoped to speak to Chanthabouly.

Kok, whose first name means "lucky" or "fortunate" in Khmer, was born to parents who fled to escape the killing fields of the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia during the 1980s. His mother said she was pregnant with him when the family arrived in the United States.

Sou said another son tried to reach Samnang on his cell phone when they heard about the shooting, but got no answer.

"I said, 'Call Sam!"' she said, crying. "He said, 'I called, but nobody answered, Mom!"'

Kok's father, Rorth Kok, said Samnang hoped to become a soldier after graduating. Kok was the father of an 18-month old boy.

"My son is gone and his baby is always crying after his father," the elder Kok said, breaking into sobs.

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