US teacher tried to 'confiscate' handgun before she was shot by 6yo - reports

  • 10/01/2023
A mother says her son is having nightmares after the shooting and is "talking in his sleep".
A mother says her son is having nightmares after the shooting and is "talking in his sleep". Photo credit: Getty Images

A parent claims the US school teacher shot by her six-year-old student attempted to confiscate the handgun before it happened.

Brittaney Gregory's son was in the same class as the six-year-old shooter at Richneck Elementary School in Newport News, Virginia. 

Gregory described her son's horrific experience in an interview with the Washington Post, and said her son felt like he couldn't breathe when the gun was fired. 

The mother said her son's class was ready and about to go to art class when the six-year-old child pulled out a handgun from their backpack and pointed it at their teacher, Abby Zwerner.

"She was going to confiscate it, and that's when he shot," the mother said.

Gregory said Zwerner is a "sweet lady" and "very attentive", adding she was her son's favourite teacher.

She added her son is "still in shock" and is having nightmares.

"He normally sleeps in his own room but the night of the shooting he came into my room," the mother said. 

"He was talking in his sleep, saying 'we got to get out of here'."

And while the school plans to provide counselling and support for their community, Gregory told the Washington Post she plans to take her son to see a therapist.

Students were moved to the school's gymnasium following the shooting, with no reports of anyone else being injured.

Police said the teacher remains in hospital in a stable condition. The gun had been legally purchased by the child's mother, they added.