A former student opened fire in a classroom building at a North Carolina university on Tuesday night, killing two people and injuring four others as students finished the last day of classes before final exams and prepared for a campus concert.
Police disarmed and apprehended the suspect in the room where pistol shots rang out, said Jeff Baker, police chief at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, crediting the officers’ actions with saving lives.
“This is a truly tragic day,” Baker said. “It is something where everyone says … God, I hope this doesn’t happen. But it happened.”
Three of the injured were in critical condition at local hospitals and the fourth was stable, Baker said. Police on Tuesday night identified the shooter as Trystan Andrew Terrell, 22, who, according to school records, was last enrolled in fall 2018.
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The victims have not been identified, pending family notification, police said.
“This is the worst day in the history of UNC Charlotte,” said Chancellor Philip L. Dubois.
The UNC Charlotte emergency lockdown alert interrupted the final presentation of graduate student Manal Naim. She said she thought it was a drill.
“We thought they were testing the network,” she said.
Authorities swept through buildings looking for students and staff sheltering in place late into the night. An alert asked students to follow officer commands and for others to stay away from campus until an all clear is given.
Jennifer Bailey was waiting to reunite with her daughter, a student at the university. Her daughter, at the time, was locked in an office with 11 other students, she said.
“It’s the worst feeling … when that text comes,” she said. “I’ve never felt so helpless.”
Shots were fired at a building on campus at approximately 4:40 p.m. EDT, university officials said. Tuesday marked the last day of classes before final exams set to begin Thursday. The university cancelled exams through the end of the week, Dubois said, and it was unclear when exams would resume.