18-Year-Old Student Fatally Shot at Bowie High School in Arlington; 17-Year-Old Suspect Arrested

An 18-year-old student, identified as Etavion Barnes, was fatally shot outside Bowie High School in Arlington, Texas, on Wednesday afternoon. The shooting occurred around 2:50 p.m. near a portable building on campus, prompting a lockdown of the school. Police have arrested 17-year-old Julian Howard, also a student at Bowie High School, in connection with the shooting.

Shooting Incident and Police Response

Arlington police responded to reports of shots fired and found Barnes unresponsive on the ground. Officers attempted life-saving measures, but Barnes was pronounced dead at a local hospital due to his injuries. Police believe that Howard targeted Barnes and that the two students knew each other, although the motive behind the shooting remains under investigation.

Howard was found nearby and taken into custody without incident. He has been charged with one count of murder and one count of possession of a controlled substance, believed to be a THC cartridge. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is assisting Arlington police in the investigation, as the weapon used in the shooting has not been recovered.

Arlington Police Chief Al Jones urged community members to properly secure their firearms and report any concerning behavior to prevent such incidents from occurring in the future.

School Response and Support for Students

Following the shooting, Bowie High School was placed on lockdown, and students and staff were later transported by bus to the Arlington ISD Athletics and Aquatics Center for reunification with their families. Arlington ISD Superintendent Dr. Matt Smith expressed his condolences and stated that counseling support would be available for students and staff for as long as needed.

Classes at Bowie High School were canceled for Thursday and Friday, with the campus set to reopen on Monday, April 29. Counselors will be available at the school starting Friday from 9 a.m. to noon and will continue to provide support next week.

The school will also be open Friday morning from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. to allow students to retrieve essential items left on campus.

Community Response and Calls for Action

The shooting at Bowie High School has left the community in shock and mourning. Mothers of gun violence victims have come together to encourage students to speak up and report any concerning behavior they may witness.

The founder of the nonprofit Mothers of Murdered Angels, who lost her daughter in 2018 and her grandson in 2020, emphasized the importance of students working together to prevent such tragedies. She urged students to speak up if they see something, even if it’s not them being bullied, as it could save a child’s life.

The incident has also reignited discussions about the need for increased school safety measures and gun control laws in Texas. Despite the implementation of a state school safety law last September, which requires armed personnel on every campus and the creation of active shooter plans, some argue that more needs to be done to protect students and staff.

Ongoing Investigation

The fatal shooting at Bowie High School has left the Arlington community devastated and searching for answers. As the investigation continues, police are working to determine the motive behind the shooting and how the suspect obtained the weapon used in the crime.

School officials and law enforcement are collaborating to provide support for students and staff affected by this tragedy. Counseling services will be available for those in need, and the school will reopen on Monday with additional security measures in place.