Novato Shooting Leaves One Dead

By Raqshan Khan

On May 26, two students from Novato High School were attacked. Suffering from gunshot and stab wounds, 17-year-old Edwin Guerra passed away due to his injuries and Llefferson Diaz was severely wounded.

The Marin County Sheriff’s Office said the teens involved in the case lived in San Rafael but attended Novato High. The shooting occurred around 5 p.m. in an alleged gang-related attack, at the end of Fairway Drive in Novato. Three Novato High students, Edwin Guevara, 16, and Juan Carlos Martinez Enriquez, 17, and Javier Guevara, 19, were arrested as suspects and are being charged as adults. Authorities are actively searching for a fourth suspect.

Students, parents, and community members are all recovering from the jarring event. Among the students grappling with the occurrence of this fatal attack were four Tam students, all part of the Marin Pirates swim team. They were just finishing up their practice at the COM Indian Valley campus pool,  when their coach ran into the locker room yelling about the shooting that had just occurred.

Marcus Fredrich, a Tam sophomore and member of the swim team, said the whole team took shelter in the storage room,  lights off, during the lockdown. “After waiting in the storage room for about 10 minutes, we heard our coach outside, who was getting everybody inside, yell, ‘Gunshot!’ That’s when we started to get worried and that idea of ‘this could never happen to me’ was starting to fade fast,” he said.

The team stayed in the storage shed for about 20-30 minutes before police allowed them to leave. Once they were allowed to go, the team sprinted out to the parking lot, with some of the swimmers running to their cars in their swim trunks and speedos.

Marin Pirates coach Warren Lager, who helped his swim team members reach safety, said, “It was a scary situation. The scariest part must’ve been not knowing what was going on exactly. But we thought it was better to be safe than sorry and I am glad we followed our emergency protocol.”

As the search for the fourth suspect continues, the Novato community is struggling to recover from this tragic event.

“Teachers and other students are trying so hard to help but no one knows exactly what to do,”  Novato High sophomore Simone Peretz said.

Novato High released a statement on their website that said, “As we all know, the last week has been an emotional and trying time for us all.  Our first priority was ensuring that our campus and students were safe. Last Thursday, school was closed as law enforcement investigated. Once law enforcement confirmed our community was again safe, the NHS staff came together on Friday to plan next steps.  On Tuesday, May 31, the Novato High staff and administration will welcome back our students to our campus.”