MATTHEWS, NC (FOX 46 WJZY) - Matthews Police Department is increasing its presence at all Matthews schools following the deadly shooting Monday at Butler High School, officials announced.
“It is important for Butler parents, students and staff to know that we are using all available means to ensure their safety," said Matthews Police Chief Clark Pennington. "We also want the Butler community to know we are grieving with you and we will do our part to ensure a smooth transition back into school and allow you to continue with the healing process.”
Sixteen year-old Bobby McKeithen, a sophomore, was shot at Butler High School Monday morning and later died at the hospital. The accused shooter, Jatwan Cuffie, is also a student at Butler High. Cuffie faces charges of first degree murder.
The shooting happened after a fight between the two students, according to police. Authorities have said bullying was contributing factor, but members of the victim's family have disputed that claim.
The gun used in the incident was stolen out of Gaston County, according to Matthews police.
Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools was initially criticized for how events after the shooting were handled. CMS Superintendent Clayton Wilcox fired back, saying that parents' actions "prevented professionals from doing their jobs."
Butler High School was closed Tuesday to allow students and staff to process what they had been through.
Chief Pennington says he will be at Butler High on Thursday to greet students and staff as they return to school.