Ep. 7: Emergency Audio – Townville Elementary School Shooting and the Murder of Jacob Hall

Episode Introduction

A quick technical note before we get into the substance of Episode 7. This is an Emergency Audio episode. These episodes include at least one Emergency Audio call or similar audio like police radio traffic (this one actually includes both). I try to keep length reasonable, but, at least so far, I haven’t cut out any audio from the calls or recordings. However, I do edit them for listenability by doing some noise reduction and other enhancements.

There are much longer censorship BEEPS in the original files. Those beeps are like nightmares for your ears, especially if you’re rocking earbuds. So I take the volume way down and make them much shorter. So, while I cut no substance from the audio, you can still find the original files for all Emergency Audio episodes at true crime review dot net slash nine one one.

There are two nine one one calls in this episode, with about twenty eight minutes of police radio traffic about the shooting between those calls. I’ve included chapters you should be able to use to skip between the different audio, but if you don’t like this set-up feel free to let me know.

Case Introduction

CBS reports Jesse Osborne had been home schooled after being suspended for bringing a weapon to school. According to WSPA news Osborne had brought a hatchet to West-Oak Middle School some time in 2015. UK newspaper The Daily Mail adds that Osborne had also brought a machete to school during that incident.

There is also compelling evidence Osborne had once attended the elementary school he targeted in this shooting.

On Wednesday, September 28, 2016 14-year-old Osborne shot his father Jeffrey to death in their Townville, South Carolina home using a handgun. He then drove to Townville Elementary School where he called called his grandparents on their mobile phone, “sobbing and mumbling unintelligibly” as CNN reported. His grandparents decided to check on the home, next door to their own, where their son and grandson lived. They found their 47-year-old son Jeffrey dead.

Osborne had driven his Dodge Ram truck three miles from his home and onto school property and jumped a fence to access a playground. One minute after making the phone call to his grandparents, shortly before 2PM, Osborne opened fire on the playground, hitting two children and a teacher. Two teachers called Emergency Audio and seven minutes later law enforcement descended on the school.

Osborne was apprehended at the scene by volunteer firefighter Jamie Brock, who the NY Daily News reported had been working with fire Chief Billy McAdams on his farm when they were notified about the shooting. Brock arrived on the scene before police and subdued Osborne before he could enter the school. Osborne was subsequently arrested.

This week’s Emergency Audio episode is dedicated to first-grader Jacob Hall, who was among the three people shot by Osborne that day. Jacob, the only fatality, died of brain injuries caused by cardiopulmonary arrest resulting from blood loss he suffered when a bullet ruptured the femoral artery in his leg. Jacob fought like one of the superheroes he loved so much but on October 1, 2016 at about 1:00 PM, at the age of six, only three days after being shot by Jesse Osborne, Jacob died at Greenville Memorial Hospital in South Carolina.

Next you will hear two Emergency Audio calls placed from within the school, one made at 1:45 PM, with a recording of police radio traffic in the middle.

Prosecutors have filed to try the 14-year-old alleged murderer Jesse Osborne as an adult but the court has not yet scheduled a hearing on that motion. Osborne has been charged with two counts of murder in the deaths of his own father Jeffrey and of Jacob Hall. He also faces three charges of attempted murder and five charges of possession of a weapon during the commission of a violent crime.

Please note there is other information floating around, especially about Jeffrey Osborne, the shooter’s father whom he is also accused of shooting to death. Most of what I left out of this introduction isn’t confirmed so I didn’t think it appropriate to share it here. You’ll all adults, you’ll find it if you want to, but please maintain healthy skepticism until we see more confirmed facts.

Please look at the show notes for a link to a Fox Carolina about what you can do if you’re interested in helping students, the school and the community in the wake of the shooting.

Post-Recordings Reading of Jacob Hall’s Parents’ Statement

True Crime Review is my way of doing a small part to give victims and their families a voice in the wake of awful crimes like this one. That’s why I’ll frequently read statements issued by families, and usually in full. The following is the full statement released by Jacob’s parents on the day he died, October 1, 2016.

“Our son, Jacob Hall, who was shot at Townville Elementary School on Wednesday, died today surrounded by family at Greenville Health System Children’s Hospital. Jacob came into our lives six years and four months ago and changed it completely. He showed us how to love, laugh and smile even on days we did not want to. God gave him to us and he was taken away from us by a senseless act. We know that Jacob has already forgiven this child for what he did to him and his family because that’s the kind of child he was. Jacob was sent to this earth for this short a period of time to show us that there is such a thing as pure love. Jacob is in heaven with God now and everyone who loves him. Words cannot express how much we will miss him.

We want to express our thanks and appreciation to the community for the outpouring of love and support. We also want to thank the doctors and nurses at GHS Children’s Hospital, who did everything in their power to try to save Jacob, and to Ms. Hollingsworth, who put her life on the line to try to protect and save Jacob. We also want to thank Preacher Blizzard and the staff of Oakdale Baptist Church, the Townville Rescue Squad, Townville Fire Department, Fire Chief Billy McAdams and all of the first responders. This is an extremely difficult time for our family, and we ask for privacy as we continue to grieve the loss of our beloved son.


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