News From Terre Haute, Indiana

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January 22, 2014

UPDATE: 1 killed in Purdue campus shooting; 1 person in custody

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) — Purdue University Provost Tim Sands says one person was killed in today’s campus shooting. School officials also said one person is in custody and police are searching a campus building.

Purdue spokeswoman Liz Nichols Evans said police had one person in custody following the shooting that was reported about noon at the electrical engineering building. At that time, it was not immediately clear if anyone was injured.

Purdue officials issued a text alert telling those on the campus about 60 miles northwest of Indianapolis to seek shelter shortly after the report came in. Within two hours, the university said there was no ongoing threat on campus and allowed normal operations to resume in all buildings except the engineering facility.

Television footage showed a fire truck and several law enforcement vehicles around the building. Photographs from the scene showed police officers with guns drawn and a person in handcuffs being led away.

Students described a chaotic scene when the first report came in.

Julissa Martinez, a freshman nursing student from Portage, said she was in psychology class on another part of campus when she received the text message saying the university was on lockdown. She said her professor briefly kept teaching, then stopped lecturing so that students could contact people to let them know they were safe.

“He tried to get everything under control because people were freaking out,” she said.

She said students were nervous because there was a lot of speculation about the severity of the situation.

“It was scary because you hear about it, but you never expect it to happen on your campus,” Martinez said.

Senior Saran Mishra, editor of the Purdue Exponent, the campus newspaper, said some students reported hearing fire alarms and were told to evacuate.

“Right now I’m still in shock,” he said.

Associated Press writer Tom Coyne in South Bend contributed to this report.

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