A teenager has been arrested in connection with last week’s shootings on a Minnesota Indian reservation, according to a police source.
Louis Jourdain, son of tribal chairman Floyd Jourdain Jr. and a student at Red Lake High School, where most of the killings took place, was arrested on Sunday, the anonymous source said.
Nine people were killed in last Monday’s attacks before 16-year-old gunman Jeff Weise, also a student at the school, took his own life.
The younger Jourdain was arrested as part of an investigation into a potentially wider plot, said the source, who gave no further details.
The Washington Post, citing two unidentified law enforcement officials familiar with the investigation, reported on its website that the juvenile was suspected of helping Weise plan the assault and had expected to take part.
A biography of Floyd Jourdain posted on his web site in February 2004 gave Louis’ age as 15, meaning he would now be 16 or 17. The site also featured a photo of father and son with the caption: “My pride and joy Louie who always shares his school achievements with me.”
Weise, who had a history of depression, first shot to death his grandfather and his grandfather’s girlfriend at a home on the reservation, then went to the school and killed a security guard, a teacher and five students. The grandfather was a tribal police officer.
Investigators said last week that Weise acted alone in the rampage on the Red Lake Band of Chippewa’s reservation. It was the nation’s deadliest school shooting since the one at Columbine High School in Colorado in 1999, which ended with the deaths of 12 students, a teacher and the two teen gunmen.
The elder Jourdain was not at tribal headquarters yesterday. Officials there released a brief statement referring all questions to federal authorities. Jourdain did not answer his phone or respond to an e-mail.
Jourdain has been the official face of the tribe in the days following Weise’s attack. At a news conference last Thursday, he said: “This is a wake-up call to us all. We need to spend more time with one another and paying more attention to our young people and what they’re doing and what they are saying.”
Funerals were held yesterday for Weise and three of his victims.