Teacher fired shot, barricaded self inside HS classroom, police say

DALTON, Ga. — A teacher is in custody, accused of firing a gun inside a classroom at Dalton High School.

Channel 2's Chris Jose obtained video that shows students running after they heard gunshots.

Dalton school leaders bused about 2,000 students to the Dalton Convention Center as part of the district's code red evacuation plans as officers descended on the school.

“I just thought about my daughter. I was scared. I was worried about my child,” parent Topeka White told Jose. “Luckily I was able to get him to text me back and that put peace and ease for sure.”

Dalton police say Jesse Randal Davidson, 53, a social studies teacher and a play-by-play football announcer at the school, fired the shot. During his planning period around 11 a.m., police said Davidson locked himself in the classroom.

“When the principal put a key in the door to try to unlock the classroom, Mr. Davidson apparently fired a shot from a handgun to an exterior window of the classroom. It doesn't appear it was aimed at anybody,” Bruce Frazier, with the Dalton Police Department, said.

Davidson has been charged with aggravated assault, carrying a weapon on school grounds, terroristic threats, reckless conduct, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime and disrupting a public school.


Records show in March 2016, he went to Dalton police to confess he killed someone.

Davidson told detectives that two friends killed a woman on his behalf because he had an online affair with her.

Police were not able to verify the story.

Davidson told them he was taking medications for depression.

The report says he went to the hospital after the interview, because he was thinking about hurting himself.

Police said the gunshot didn't injure anyone but the school was placed on a code red lockdown.

Jose was able to speak to students over FaceTime at the height of the evacuation.

“It wasn't a drill. And we had to get down and barricade the doors so nobody could come in. Nobody knew what was going on at the time,” student Jayden Boston told Jose.

Dalton High School student Wesley Caceres sent Jose Snapchat video that shows the chaotic scene with students running to a safe location.

Officials hold news conference for Dalton County school incident

Officials release new information about the shots fired report and teacher arrest at Dalton High School: http://2wsb.tv/2oBVI5h

Posted by WSB-TV on Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Caceres said the school routinely has code red drills.

“This one was real. We didn't know what to do, so we hid in a corner and turned off the lights,” Caceres said.

The students were taken to the Dalton Convention Center, where parents were able to pick their children up.