Texas campus issues alert amid reports of shooter
Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 22, 2013
HOUSTON (AP) — A shooting on a Texas community college campus wounded three people Tuesday and sent students fleeing for safety as officials placed the campus on lockdown, officials said.
Harris County Sheriff’s Maj. Armando Tello said authorities had detained a person of interest.
Authorities also thought there could be a second shooter, according to a law enforcement official in Washington who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the ongoing case.
The school’s official Twitter feed said the shooting was between two people and that the situation was under control. It had issued an alert on its website earlier, telling students and faculty to take immediate shelter or avoid the campus.
Aerial footage from local television stations showed police cars and ambulances parked on the Lone Star College System campus about 20 miles north of downtown Houston. Emergency personnel could be seen tending to people on stretchers, while others ran from a building led by officers.
Melinda Muse, spokeswoman for the Harris County Health System, said two people were taken to Harris Health Ben Taub Hospital Emergency Center following the shooting.
Tello said three people were injured.
Cody Harris, 20, he said he was in a classroom with about six or seven other students waiting for a psychology class to start when he heard eight shots. He and other students looked at each other, said “I guess we should get out of here,” and fled.
“I was just worried about getting out,” Harris said. “I called my grandmother and asked her to pick me up.”
The Lone Star College System has an enrollment of 90,000 students and six college campuses, according to its website.
Along with the college, four nearby schools in the Aldine Independent School District went into lockdown, a district spokesman said.
Lone Star student Daniel Flores, 19, said he was in a tutoring lab on the second floor doing homework when he heard six to seven shots.
“I didn’t think they were shots,” he said. “It sounded like someone was kicking a door.”
About 60 people were in the lab, and they began running out of the room once they realized the sound was gunfire, he said. They fled to a nearby student services center, where authorities kept them there for about 30 minutes before letting them go.