Video shows coach disarming, embracing Oregon student

National News

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Surveillance video obtained first by KOIN 6 News shows the dramatic moment when Parkrose High School football coach Keanon Lowe disarmed a student carrying a loaded shotgun on campus.

Angel Granados-Diaz was 18 when he brought the gun to school on May 17.

The video — obtained Friday from the Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office through a public records request — is the visual accompaniment to the story recounted by Lowe during a press conference earlier this year.

Lowe, who also works as a security guard at Parkrose, said he had been called to the fine arts building on campus to get a student. The surveillance video showed Granados-Diaz nearly cross paths with him in a hallway.

“I walk in there, I get to the classroom, I’m in the classroom for 15, 20 seconds — you know, I ask the teacher, ‘Is the student here?’”

Granados-Diaz was only steps away with the shotgun tucked under his coat.

“The door opens — I’m within arm’s length of the door, about 3 feet away from the door, and there’s a kid with a gun, a shotgun,” Lowe said. “In a fraction of a second, I analyzed everything really fast,” he said. “I saw the look in his face, look in his eyes, looked at the gun, realized it was a real gun and then my instincts just took over.”

Lowe said running away never crossed his mind.

“I lunged for the gun, put two hands on the gun. He had his two hands on the gun and obviously the kids are running out of the classroom and screaming.”

The football coach handed the gun to another teacher then wrapped Granados-Diaz in a hug. As students ran for safety and police rushed to the scene, he remained focused on the teen in front of him.

“I felt compassion for him; a lot of times, especially when you’re young, you don’t realize what you’re doing until it’s over,” he said.

The school went into lockdown and students were evacuated a short time later. Their parents met them off-campus. Emotions ran high as relieved parents comforted their shaken kids.

“I can see him coming into the room with just a gun in his hand. It was terrifying, it was truly terrifying,” Parkrose High School senior Alexa Pope told KOIN 6 News at the time.

“We all hid, we hid under some clothes and stuff, too, just in case anything would happen,” said student Annie Vong.

Granados-Diaz pleaded guilty to gun charges on Oct. 10.

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office said Granados-Diaz brought the gun, which was loaded with one round, to the school grounds during a mental health crisis.

Officials said he never pointed the gun at anyone other than himself. Investigators said he made suicidal statements to another person before bringing the gun on campus.

Granados-Diaz’s lawyer said the teen was also drunk when he entered the school.

A Multnomah County court handed down a 36-month probation sentence under a pretrial agreement for one count of unlawful possession of a firearm in a public building and one count of unlawful possession of a loaded firearm in public.

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(This story was originally published on October 19, 2019)

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