A TEACHER from Spain was forced to hide in cupboard with her pupils as a white supremacist went on a killing spree in the US.

Patricia Rivas, from Rioja, was with five students when gunman Nikolas Cruz, 19, opened fire with an assault rifle at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Florida.

Cruz, who killed 17 people, had pulled the fire alarm to make everyone run outside into his line of fire.

But as Rivas, 40, began to take her pupils outside, she heard a fellow member of staff shout ‘code red’.


“I heard ‘Code Red Code Red’ and in that moment reacted very quickly, we started to run,” she told RTVE in an interview.

She took her pupils back to the classroom and hid in a cupboard.

They stayed there for about an hour while watching live TV coverage on her mobile phone.

“We stayed silent, I tried to calm everyone down, to keep them quiet,” she said.

Eventually police found them and gave them the all clear to leave.

Rivas, who has been at the school since July last year, found out that one of the students she taught Spanish to had been killed in the massacre.

She added: “It was very intense, very stressful and above all very sad, a tragedy, a nightmare.”