School bus comes in line of fire during Jefferson City shootout

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JEFFERSON CITY - A school bus carrying elementary school students was caught in the middle of a shootout in Jefferson City Wednesday afternoon. The bus was struck by gunfire at least four times, but no students were hurt, according to the Jefferson City Police Department.

The bus driver was able to quickly leave the scene and stop in a parking lot in the 700 block of Madison Street. Police arrived and helped secure the students. All were accounted for and either released to the custody of their parents or placed on another bus.

Police said the gunshots were first called in at 4 p.m. in the 500 block of Elm Street.

Police were then told there was a gunshot victim at a local hospital. The police department believes that person is connected with the exchange of fire.

Police Cpt. Doug Shoemaker said police were at the hospital questioning the victim and searching for further suspect information.

The bus was still parked in the lot late Wednesday afternoon as investigators processed it for evidence.

Police said the bus driver is an employee of First Student, the company that contracts with Jefferson City Public Schools. Shoemaker said the driver acted quickly and provided the 911 center with vital information on the students' whereabouts and status.

Anyone with information about the suspect(s) is urged to contact the Jefferson City Police Department, or to call CrimeStoppers at 659-TIPS.