Safety and security is an increasingly serious issue across the countries of the world. In the past, there have been numerous stories of senseless shootings and killings, with victims ranging from the elderly to elementary school children. In 2013, Michael Brandon Hill firmly stamped his name onto the rhetoric about the dangers of guns and the need for gun control among other issues.
He was 20 years old at the time when he walked into an elementary school with a fully loaded assault rifle mentally prepared to shoot up the place. Were it not for the bravery of the school accountant, Antoinette Tuff, the story might have ended a lot different than it did. So what has happened to Michael since then? Here we lay out everything we know about the elementary school shooting and the shooter.
Michael Brandon Hill – Bio
Besides his various criminal offenses and misdemeanors, nobody really knows anything about the crazed gunman. There is no substantive information online concerning his time as a child and his education if any.
Michael Brandon Hill does have a checkered history, one that is well documented. Michael was born on June 28, 1993. Nothing is known about any member of his family except that he has an older brother, Tim. He grew up mentally troubled and got into so much trouble as a kid until he was arrested in February 2009, at the age of 15 for stealing.
His brother, Tim, speaking to ABC sometime after the elementary school shooting scare, confirmed that Michael had also threatened to kill him some months prior and had even posted a message to that fact on Facebook. Prior to his shooting mission at the elementary school, Michael had been off his medication for a while.
What Happened To Him?
On August 20, 2013, Michael Brandon Hill armed himself to the teeth with an AK-47 and 500 rounds of ammunition. He stepped into the Ronald E. McNair Discovery Learning Academy, located in Decatur, DeKalb County, about a mile from his home. He was fully prepared to kill anyone in his path, including staff, parents, and students.
Somehow, he made it past the school’s security area, past the entrance, and into the building. Michael then proceeded to take hostage the first member of staff he saw – Antoinette Tuff, the school accountant.
Thankfully, Tuff, like all the other staff had been trained for situations like this. Tapping into her training, she didn’t panic. Hull then led her into an office while the other members of staff led the students safely out of the school.
The gunman’s first request was for Tuff to call up a local television station. He wanted them to film the entire event and, according to him, “film the police die”. Much to Tuff’s credit, she tried to calm him down by narrating her personal story to him about her life, hardships, and her subsequent divorce. Unknown to Michael, Antoinette had put through a 911 emergency call that recorded her entire conversation with Brandon Hill.
Her calm coercion eventually began to work its magic. And soon Michael told her to call the DeKalb County probation office to fill them in on what was going on.
Also, although no one was hurt in the incident, there was a brief fire exchange when the police arrived in the scene. Michael Brandon Hill squeezed off some shots and the police returned the fire. It is unclear how many shots were fired by the gunman or the police. What is known, however, is that Hill surrendered almost immediately.
Tuff later admitted, after Hill had been taken in, that she believed he would have killed everybody had she not kept him in the office.
After Hill was remanded into custody, it was reported on CNN by Marlena Baldacci that all the kids were accounted for and had been gathered to the parking lot of the Walmart Store opposite the school. This was where parents came to pick up their children.
The DeKalb police also reported searching the premises and Michael’s car after the situation had de-escalated. They reported finding a sort of explosive device in the trunk of the car. The Police bomb squad then evacuated a nearby neighborhood and carried out a controlled explosion.
Where is He Now?
After Michael Brandon Hill was arrested by the police, he apologized and revealed that he was off his meds. Speaking to ABC Atlanta, his older brother, Tim, confirmed that Michael had had to rely on the drugs since at least the turn of that year. He described how their mother’s house looked like the inside of a drug store due to Michael’s condition.
He had already been earlier in the year for the threats against his brother’s life. Michael was charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and aggravated assault on a police officer. He was also arrested again in mid-March 2013, and sentenced to probation for making terrorist threats in DeKalb and Henry Counties.
Michael’s medical disorders and bipolar nature also meant that he had tried to take his own life on nine attempts in the past. It was after these two incidents that he was diagnosed as medically ill and prescribed psychiatric medication.
After the botched school shootout, Michael Brandon Hill’s trial saw him plead guilty to 13 counts. These included illegal firearm possession, carrying in a school environment, aggravated assault, burglary, and making terrorist threats.
Michael is currently doing time. He was sentenced to 20 years of jail time, a sentence he is currently seeing out at the DeKalb County Prison.