When you’re in school, homecoming tends to be a pretty big deal. It’s an excuse to celebrate, and when it’s close to a party holiday like Halloween, then it’s even more so.
However, a party at a Texas A&M satellite campus turned deadly over the weekend with two dead, 12 injured.
A gunman opened fire at an off-campus college party in Texas, leaving two people dead and 12 others injured before he escaped in the ensuing chaos, authorities said Sunday.
Authorities believe the shooter may have been targeting just one person at the party of about 750 people outside Greenville, 15 miles (24 kilometers) southwest of a satellite campus of the Texas A&M University System, and that others may have been shot at random, Hunt County Sheriff Randy Meeks said. Authorities were still looking for the suspect, Meeks said, and had not yet identified him.
The shooting took place around midnight Saturday at what Meeks described as a Halloween and homecoming party for Texas A&M University-Commerce, though officials have said it was not a school-sanctioned event. Authorities believe there was one male shooter who entered the venue through the back door and began firing with a handgun, Meeks said.
The 12 injured included six people who were trampled or hurt by glass in the melee, according to Sgt. Jeff Haines, a spokesman for the sheriff’s department. Six others were injured by gunfire. Four of them were in critical condition and one was in good condition Sunday afternoon, he said. He did not know the condition of the sixth person.
As things currently stand, this event doesn’t rise to the level of a mass shooting, and let’s hope it doesn’t. That would require two of the injured to pass away, which no one should want.
However, it does sound like there could be at least one more dead if not for the fact that law enforcement was actually already on the scene due to parking issues.
A patrol sergeant and deputy were at the venue when the shooting happened, having been called there for complaints about illegal parking, Meeks said. An off-duty Farmersville police officer was also there, working as security for the party.
Authorities were questioning someone who appeared to be intoxicated when they heard gunshots from the back of the building, Meeks said.
Meeks praised the patrol sergeant and deputy, saying the sergeant quickly determined that one of gunshot victims had life-threatening injuries and transported that person to a hospital, while the deputy triaged others until paramedics arrived.
Good for them. Those two deserve to be commended for their quick actions. It’s unlikely they could have made their way through the crowd quickly enough to engage the shooter since one would presume parking was in the front and the shooting was in the back, but they could help save lives, which they did. Some of the students may well survive due to their quick actions.
There doesn’t appear to be any information about the shooter. We do know, though, that no weapon was found on the scene.