“It’s been challenging”: Virginia teacher Abigail Zwerner who was shot by 6-year-old speaks about attack

(image via Abby Zwerner/Facebook/ Law&Crime Network)
Zwerner plans on suing the school administration for inaction (image via Abby Zwerner/Facebook/ Law&Crime Network)

On Tuesday, March 21, Virginia teacher Abigail Zwerner, who was shot by a 6-year-old student on January 6 in Newport News, Virginia, opened up about the incident and provided a health update.

Abigail Zwerner told reporters that while she is recovering from the attack, she is still mentally and physically traumatized.

She said:

"I’ve been doing okay. You know, it’s been challenging. I’ve gone through a lot of obstacles and challenges. Some days are not so good days, where I can’t get up out of bed. Some days are better than others, where I’m able to get out of bed and make it to my appointments."

Newport News authorities reported that the six-year-old shooter cannot be prosecuted for the crime due to his youth.

Officials and teachers respond to the shooting of Abigail Zwerner

The shooting shocked the country, especially due to the young age of the perpetrator. Randi Weingarten, President of The American Federation of Teachers, said that it was a clear sign that authorities need to make more of an effort to clamp down on firearms in schools.

Weingarten said:

"When will the shock of gunshots in school be enough to inspire the action necessary to prevent guns in schools and the shattering of lives it causes?"

As per the New York Post, before the shooting, school officials had received information that the six-year-old was armed. However, security allegedly failed to act on the information.

Abigail Zwerner's lawyer, Diane Toscano, also asserted that the shooting needed to be blamed on the inaction of the school district.

During an interview with Today, Abigail Zwerner did not personally comment on any potential legal proceedings in the wake of the incident. Instead, she said she is trying to remain optimistic and focus on her rehabilitation.

She said:

"But, you know, for goin’ through what I’ve gone through, I try to stay positive. You know, try to have a positive outlook on what’s happened and where my future’s heading."

In a separate interview with CBS, Zwerner said that her doctors are uncertain about whether or not she will be able to use one of her hands.

She said:

"Physical therapy is not only physically exhausting but mentally exhausting as well. I'm supposed to be moving them once every hour, throughout the hour, just manipulating them to get that blood flowing and to get that movement back into the hand."

According to MSN, on January 25, Diane Toscano announced Zwerner's intentions to sue the administration for their alleged neglect leading up to the shooting.

Briana Foster Newton, who was the principal at the time of the incident, has stepped down from the role. She is, however, still employed with the Newport News school district. Her new occupation in the administration remains undisclosed.

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Edited by Prem Deshpande
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