The shooting of Adrian Precia at spingard high school has to be one of the most mysterious and shocking shooting in the 80s when shooting at schools were not that much common, many consider that event could have changed the idea of gun control at schools but it was a lost opportunity!

During the 80s, Shootings at schools were very rare as compared to what is happening in schools right now in fact Adrian Precia shooting was happened at a school in D.C, a bureaucratic and government hub in States with families working at NSA and many other prominent state institutions. This case was one of the mysterious one with people still have doubts that this shooting is accidental, they just can’t believe how a 18 year old Michael Joseph Pratt could have pulled the trigger ‘Accidently’


Events around shooting of Adrian Precia

This case has an appalling crime scene, mysterious arguments, conflicting statements of one eye witness, and obviously the death of Adrian Precia. That day was not a normal one in Spingard high school for sure as there are dozens of new students at high school, and many of them were present new the crime scene in the auditorium registering for school activities. At the same time school assembly was happening where students were having fun and chatting, then Suddenly Boom a boy was lying on the ground in the middle of a crowded school.

Adrian Precia
Spingarn High School in 80s

Adrian Precia and his friends

While for understanding the scenario or motive of Adrian Precia Death (lived in the National Arboretum in Northeast Washington), we must know the circumstances that surround the shooting.

First of all, Whole crime scene was not an Isolated one rather it is in the middle of Auditorium presence of possible eye witnesses. So if a persons plans to kill someone this environment/ place was not suitable at all even for a dumb 18 year old kid like Michael Joseph Pratt. Mostly  planed homicides happen at isolated place not in a crowded one like this!

Adrian Precia
The Spingarn High School team (R) from Washington DC (Photo credit should read TIM SLOAN/AFP via Getty Images)

Were there any arguments between the victim and suspect

So according to numerous high school students, both Adrian Precia and Joseph Pratt were buddies prior to the event. They hung out together and even at that day both were having normal banter and laughs. According to police reports we acquired, eye witnesses saw joseph pratt in absolute shock seeing Adrian precia lying in floor, commenting on the crime scene police said normally homicide shooters runaway or flee the crime scene but not in this case where Joseph Pratt was present at the scene till the police came in to take him in their custody.

This established that in understanding of majority there was no conflict or argument between the two!

The conflicting eye witness statement of Tanya Brown

So this case gets more shocking and conflicting when statement of Tanya brown comes in, she was present at the crime scene three rows behind Precia and his friends in the cavernous Springarn auditorium.

She came in with whole different account of murder saying that was not accident at all rather said it was a planned one.

Adrian Precia
Shooting in States

Describing the statement of Tanya Quote n Quote

“At first I thought they was playing with the gun,”

“It was small and silver . . . Then their voices started getting louder”

One friend of Adrian shouted ” he’d shoot Ajax ”

(Context – Ajax is nickname of adrian Precia)

Ajax Replied ” No, you won’t ”

Tanya added ” Then the gun went off and Ajax kind of got up and tried to run away, but his eyes rolled back in his head, and he just fell down and hit his head on the floor ”


Why Tanya statement matters or not ? Both Arguments

Well According to police reports we Acquired, Tanya statement was one of the most detailed one with describing the minor details of account. This makes her statement more strong and should be considered important but Tanya herself was 17 years old, a minor with probably describing the event in response of seeing a boy lying in bed which might have emotional effects on the statement. Plus, many students in high school mostly drive to sensationalism at the expense of accuracy

Police account submitted to court was not complying with the events describe by Tanya which means police partially rejected her statement. But still to this day we still don’t if she was right or wrong!

Adrian Precia
Schools in 80s
D.C Police Chief Alfonze Gibson Account

D.C. Deputy Police Chief Alfonze Gibson, commander of the department’s criminal investigation division said there was “absolutely no evidence of an argument” between Adrian or his friends.

Adrian Precia
Officer Investigating Adrian Precia Murder
Type of weapon recovered

Joseph Pratt was recovered with a silver color small firearm describer as unregistered .25-caliber pistol while another 17 year old student was detained who apparently provided joseph the firearm.

Adrian Precia
Pistol similar to used by Adrian Precia

Ajax Personality and life style

Well Adrian precia aka Ajax was described as another cool boy who was friends with many students like joseph pratt, the type of guy who you can expect to get in trouble for many things. Adrian precia was not really the nerd or study type guy rather he is totally the apposite of that!

As described by one of his close aides ” he type that liked to hang out and get in trouble with the police. . . . He was not really much in sports, but he liked to shoot dice “

Precia mother was a government employee as expected as they were living in D.C while his father was a construction worker, in a tidy brick home with a vegetable patch out back.

One of Neighbour also weight on his suspicious lifestyle and activities by saying ” It doesn’t shock me to hear that he got killed. The way he lived, it was expected “

Adrian Precia
D.C neighbourhood of thugs
Why this Shooting was so famous

As it happened in the heart of United states government hub, Washington D.C this shooting became the interest of whole media. Shooting in D.C especially in the middle of school was quiet rare at that time.

This Shooting could have resulted in more effective measures on Gun Control But sadly it was a lost opportunity because there were talks of reforms on gun control but that never happened as the case settles in history books. To this day, we experience dozens of shootings in school all across states every year so if there were any strong measures taken by government back then, then at least many of us shouldn’t have to worry about school shootings at all. More about Gun Control at Schools

Adrian Precia

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