Gun Confiscation On The Doorstep: Another Campus Shooting


An 18-year-old student opened fire with a handgun on the campus of Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff early on Friday, killing one person and wounding three others, before police took him into custody in the latest in a series of U.S. school shootings, authorities said.

The suspected gunman was identified as Steven Jones, a freshman at the university, campus police chief Gregory Fowler said.

Jones brandished a handgun during a confrontation with several male students, Fowler said. The three injured students suffered multiple gunshot wounds and were being treated at Flagstaff Medical Center, Fowler said. Their conditions were not disclosed.

The shooting occurred hours before President Barack Obama was scheduled to visit Roseburg, Oregon to meet privately with families of nine people killed in a mass shooting at a community college last week.

The incident occurred in a parking lot adjacent to a residence hall, a university spokesman said. The shots were reported at 1:20 a.m., officials said.

“We don’t know the facts yet about what brought them together, or what caused the confrontation,” Fowler said.

Jones did not try to run, was taken into custody by university police and is cooperating with police, Fowler said.

Guns are not allowed to be carried on Northern Arizona University’s campus under Arizona law and Arizona Board of Regents policy, Fowler said.

The campus was secure and classes were to go on as scheduled on Friday, university president Rita Cheng told a news conference. Cheng called the incident “isolated.”

“Our hearts are heavy,” Cheng said.

Some Delta Chi fraternity members were involved in the shooting, the Washington Post and other media reported.

About 20,000 students attend classes at the Flagstaff campus, according to the school’s website.

“My thoughts and prayers are with families of the person who was killed and the three others who were wounded,” Republican Arizona U.S. Senator John McCain said in a statement.

McCain said he continues “to pray for the recovery of the injured, as well as all those in the NAU community who have been impacted by this terrible tragedy.”

Obama reacted to the Oregon killings by vowing to step up efforts to curb gun violence in the United States. Gun rights advocates said the Oregon shootings underscored the importance of the right of Americans to bear arms and defend themselves.
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