The 15-year-old boy who held 23 students and a teacher hostage at Marinette High School on Monday died Tuesday at a Green Bay hospital from a self-inflicted gunshot wound. Marinette Police Chief Jeff Skorik said the county coroner confirmed the death of Samuel Hengel. Hengel was a sophomore at MHS and a resident of the Marinette County community of Porterfield. Skorik said an autopsy would be conducted. Marinette County District Attorney Alan Brey said he believes police acted appropriately based on what he knows now. Hengel apparently shot himself as officers stormed the classroom.
“It was a tragedy,” said Marinette School District Superintendent Tim Banek. “I think you can only imagine, especially those of you that may be a parent, what those parents last night were feeling, or the spouse of the teacher. It was very intense.”
Skorik, Brey and Banek spoke at a noon press conference. Also speaking was MHS Corrie Lambie, who entered the hostage room about 3:40 Monday afternoon to check on student who had not returned a phone call from a parent. “The door was locked, the classroom was dark. I used my key to enter the classroom, I took a couple steps in. The student threatened me with the gun and told me to step back and leave the classroom,” said Lambie, who left the room and called 911. Marinette Police were on the scene within minutes, and SWAT team officers were sent from Green Bay as the hostage situation developed. Police and school officials would not speculate Tuesday on what may have motivated Hengel.
Jim Callow, Bay Cities Radio