This football coach disarmed a student with a gun. Then he hugged him

In Oregon, school security cameras captured the moment a high school football coach disarmed a student who brought a loaded shotgun to school. CNN's Polo Sandoval reports what led to the coach's quick-thinking in that moment.

Posted: Oct 20, 2019 8:58 AM
Updated: Oct 20, 2019 7:45 PM


A high school football and track coach in Portland, Oregon, was celebrated as a hero earlier this year after he disarmed a student with a shotgun.

The student walked into a classroom at Parkrose High School in May, intending to use the firearm to take his own life, the Multnomah County District Attorney's office said in a statement last week.

At the time, reports said the coach, Keanon Lowe, tackled the student. But according to emotional surveillance footage released by the district attorney's office Friday, Lowe did nothing of the sort.

Instead, he embraced the student.

Footage shows the student, identified as Angel Granados-Diaz, walking down the hallway where the camera is filming. He moves out of view as he enters the classroom, right behind Lowe. Seconds later, people begin running through the hallways.

Lowe is seen backing out of the classroom, with the shotgun in his right hand. With his other arm, the coach holds the student at arm's length. Another staff member enters the hallway and takes the gun from Lowe.

Then Lowe wraps the student in his arms. The coach rubs his back and holds him close. They're later seen sitting on the floor of the hallway as police arrive and arrest the student.

Lowe, who was a standout wide receiver for the University of Oregon between 2010 and 2014, told reporters at the time that they had an 'emotional' moment together, according to CNN affiliate KATU.

'In that time, I felt compassion for him,' Lowe said. 'A lot of times, especially when you're young, you don't realize what you're doing until it's over.'

The district attorney's office said Granados-Diaz had made suicidal statements to another student. He never pointed the shotgun at anyone but himself and never fired the gun on campus, the district attorney's office said. He did try to pull the trigger, but the shotgun, which only had one round, did not fire. That is when Lowe took the firearm from him.

Lowe's actions were 'decisive, courageous and compassionate,' said Adam Thayne, an attorney for Granados-Diaz, in a statement.

Thayne reiterated that the student had no intention of harming anyone besides himself and is receiving treatment.

'Angel would like to thank Mr. Lowe, the first responders, the Parkrose High School community, and all those who have supported him throughout this process,' Thayne said. 'He is looking to move forward in the best way possible.'

Granados-Diaz eventually pleaded guilty to one count of unlawful possession of a firearm in a public building and one count of unlawful possession of a loaded firearm in public, the office said. He was sentenced last week to three years of probation.

'Through the course of the investigation it became clear to law enforcement and our office that Mr. Granados-Diaz did not have the intent to hurt anyone other than himself while at Parkrose High School,' Deputy District Attorney Parakram Singh said.

Under the agreement, Granados-Diaz will receive mental health and substance abuse treatment, the district attorney's office said.

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