Chaos in Prague: 14 Dead, Dozens wounded in terrifying university shooting

Shooting in Charles University in Prague | Credits: Reuters
Shooting in Charles University in Prague | Credits: Reuters

Czech: The heart-wrenching tragedy struck the Czech Republic’s capital city of Prague, where a horrifying shooting incident claimed the lives of fourteen individuals at Charles University on a Thursday.

Authorities leading the investigation reported that more than two dozen people suffered varying degrees of injuries during the distressing event. Updates on the situation were disseminated via X, previously known as Twitter, with authorities confirming the death of the suspected student gunman, according to NBC News.

Police stand guard following a shooting at one of Charles University | Credits: Reuters

The motive behind the shooting remains unclear, and the identities of the victims have not yet been officially disclosed. However, authorities suspect the assailant was a student from Hostouň, who targeted the university. Reports from NBC News indicate that there is a strong likelihood that the shooter took his own life following the attack.

Initial reports from the police suggested approximately 15 casualties and 24 injuries. However, these numbers were later revised to 14 fatalities and 25 individuals wounded. It remains uncertain whether the gunman is included in these figures.

Prague’s Emergency Services provided details on the injured individuals receiving medical attention at nearby healthcare facilities. Police President Martin Vondrášek indicated ten seriously injured, eight moderately, and five with minor injuries. Authorities cautioned that these figures might change.

According to local police reports, the 24-year-old student, David Kozak, purportedly intended to end his life on his way to Prague.

24-year-old student suspect, David Kozak | Credits: Czech Police

The police swiftly responded to the first call reporting the shooting at 2:59 pm local time, arriving at the campus within minutes. The shooter’s body was discovered around 3:20 pm local time after an extensive search.

Additionally, authorities found the suspect’s father deceased, reportedly from suicide. The timeline of events concerning his death remains unclear in relation to the shooting.

In the aftermath, a downtown Prague building was evacuated, and public advisories urged residents to remain indoors. Sections around Náměstí Jan Palach were sealed off following the tragic incident.

Videos circulated online, geolocated by NBC News, depicted people fleeing on the Charles Bridge after the shooting.

Charles University, among Europe’s oldest institutions, expressed condolences on its official website, mourning the loss and extending sympathies to the victims’ families and all affected by the tragic event.

US President Joe Biden, First Lady Jill Biden, and White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre offered prayers and expressed sorrow for the victims and their families in the wake of the distressing incident.