The Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg is on lockdown after a police officer and another person were shot and killed on the school’s campus, according to the Associated Press.
A police officer was shot after a routine traffic stop with the suspected shooter. A second victim has also been confirmed to be shot dead in a parking lot after the suspect fled from the first shooting.
In a press conference, Mark Owczarski, director of news and information in university relations, said the university is investigating a possible connection to an armed robbery that occurred yesterday.
The Collegiate Times, the student newspaper of Virginia Tech, has reported that a SWAT team has searched and left Squires Student Center and are currently stationed around Torg Hall. According to a tweet by The Collegiate Times, six Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents have arrived on campus, with 20 others on standby. The FBI is also reported to be rushing agents to the campus as well.
The suspected shooter is reported as being a white male wearing a maroon hoodie, a gray hat with a neon brim, gray sweatpants and carrying a backpack, and the suspect has not been apprehended yet, according to the Virginia Tech website.
Students and staff of Virginia Tech are asked to stay indoors in a secure location until further notice. All schools in Montgomery County, not just Virginia Tech, have been locked down.
The official academic term for Virginia Tech ended yesterday, with today being a “reading day” before finals begin, meaning that there weren’t many students in academic buildings on campus today.
Virginia Tech was fined a maximum of $55,000 in March of this year for not responding quickly enough to the 2007 shootings in which Cho Seung-Hui, a 23-year-old student, shot dead 32 people on the campus before killing himself. The fine is for violating the Federal Cleary Act, which requires the timely reporting of crimes on campus, and was battled by campus representatives in court yesterday.
For on-the-scene information, check in with www.vt.edu, which has reverted its online homepage to a feed of updates, or by following The Collegiate Times’ twitter: @CollegiateTimes.
Last updated at 2:51 p.m.
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