UPDATED: 4/16/13 @ 5 am: Nigel Hardy, the 13-year-old Hillview Middle School student believed to be suicidal and armed with his father’s handgun, has passed away, according to Sgt. Harry Drucker of the Sheriff’s Headquarter’s Bureau.
“It’s being investigated as a suicide, there is no indication that there is anything other than that,” Drucker said early Tuesday morning. Nigel apparently died of a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
If you or a loved one is in need of mental health assistance please refer to the numbers below for help:
- Suicide prevention hotline: 877-727-4747, 800-448-3000
- California Youth Crisis : 800-843-5200
- Angel’s Flight: 800-833-2499
- Children of the Night: 800-551-1300
Read our earlier story on the incident below.
PALMDALE – Hillview Middle School was placed on lockdown for hours on Monday as authorities searched for a 13-year-old student believed to be suicidal and armed with his father’s handgun.
Nigel Hardy was reported missing at approximately 9:15 a.m. Monday from the 2300 Block of West Avenue N-8 in Palmdale.
“Hardy is despondent over an incident at school which resulted in [him] being temporarily suspended,” said Palmdale Community Relations deputy Jodi Wolfe in a statement.
Hardy, a male cheerleader, was being bullied and had gotten into a fight with another student last week, according to a Palmdale Station broadcast. That fight apparently resulted in Hardy’s suspension from the school, according to the broadcast.
Hardy’s father found an apparent suicide note in the 13-year-old’s room and alerted authorities Monday. The father’s firearm was also missing, but it was unknown whether Hardy had taken the weapon, officials said.
As a precautionary measure, Hillview Middle School was placed on a “state of heightened awareness”, although the note did not articulate any threat toward the school or any other person, according to deputy Wolfe. About a dozen deputies and a K-9 unit responded to the school Monday.
Hours later, frantic parents crammed the entrance of the school, as deputies with drawn weapons stood guard.
Students were released, one-by-one, to waiting parents, and some students were required to leave their backpacks behind in their classrooms.
By 6 p.m., deputies were combing the Boulders at the Ranch II mobile home park in Palmdale, but the teen was still at large. Officials set up a command post at Marie Kerr Park.
Hardy is described as a 13-year-old White male with dark brown wavy hair, approximately 5 feet 7 inches tall and weighing about 127 pounds. He was last seen wearing a black long sleeve shirt, dark pants and grey Nike shoes.
Anyone with information on Hardy’s whereabouts is encouraged to contact the Palmdale Sheriff Station at 661-272-2400.
UPDATED 4/15/2013 @ 11 pm: Nigel Hardy has been admitted to Antelope Valley Hospital with a gunshot wound believed to be self-inflicted, authorities just confirmed. Palmdale Sheriff’s detectives were contacted by Kern County authorities Monday night and told that a boy matching Nigel’s description and suffering from a gunshot wound was being transported to the hospital, according to Lt. Johnson of the Palmdale Station. Authorities contacted Nigel’s family who identified the boy as Nigel Hardy and the search was called off. Johnson did not have any details regarding Nigel’s condition, and the Hardy family was still at Antelope Valley Hospital as of 11 p.m. Monday. We will update this story as more information becomes available.
UPDATED 4/16/2013 @ 12 pm: According to an update issued by the sheriff’s department Tuesday afternoon: “Nigel Hardy, the teen reported missing from Palmdale committed suicide in Kern County at approximately 8:00 PM Monday, April 15, 2013. The investigation will be handled by Kern County Sheriff’s Department personnel.”