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Maryland school shooting victim Jaelynn Willey dies after being taken off life support

"She will not make it," her mother said earlier. "She's brain-dead and has nothing — no life left in her."
by Associated Press /  / Updated 
Image: Great Mills High School
Crime scene tape is used around Great Mills High School, the scene of a shooting, on March 20, 2018 in Great Mills.Alex Brandon / AP

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GREAT MILLS, Md. — The teenage girl who was shot by an ex-boyfriend inside their Maryland high school died late Thursday after she was removed from life support, the sheriff's office said Friday.

Jaelyn Willey died at 11:34 p.m. ET just hours after her mother said the 16-year-old was brain dead and that there was "no life left in her."

"My daughter was hurt by a boy who shot her in the head ... and took everything from our lives, " Melissa Willey said at a news conference. "She will not make it."

Image: Jaelynn Willey
Jaelynn WilleyCourtesy of the Willey family via AP

Willey was one of nine, the second oldest child, and was a member of her school's swim team, her mother said.

The teen was shot Tuesday by 17-year-old Austin Rollins at Great Mills High School in St. Mary’s County.

Rollins died afterward after trading shots with a school resource officer who got there within a minute. It’s not yet clear whether Rollins was killed by the officer’s bullet or took his own life.

The St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday Rollins and the girl had been in a relationship that recently ended.

"All indications suggest the shooting was not a random act of violence," police said in a statement.

Willey had been in critical condition at the University of Maryland Prince George’s Hospital Center. A fundraising page to help her family has raised nearly $78,000.

A 14-year-old boy who was shot in the thigh during the encounter was released Wednesday from a hospital.

St. Mary’s County Sheriff Tim Cameron credited Deputy First Class Blaine Gaskill with preventing any more loss of life.

Gaskill, a six-year veteran with SWAT team training, responded within a minute and fired his weapon simultaneously with a final shot fired by Rollins, Cameron said. The officer was unharmed.

On Wednesday, investigators said the Glock handgun used in the shooting was legally owned by Rollins father. In Maryland it is illegal for anyone under age 21 to possess a handgun unless it is required for their employment.

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