Firearm discharged at UMass Dartmouth

umass-shooting-dps-email-photo-umassd-edu
by Scott Lariviere, Staff Writer

On October 16, gun shots were reported going off at 3 a.m. in the Cedar Dell West area at UMass Dartmouth. What was first thought to be fireworks was soon confirmed to be gun shots.

The Department of Public Safety sent out an email alert to the university community to make them aware of the incident.

As the investigation initiated, it was revealed that three vehicles received damage. Witnesses had come forward with physical evidence for police to confirm a gun was fired.

Nobody was injured in the incident.

Subsequent emails updated the campus community after the initial investigation. Department of Public Safety is working with the Massachusetts State Police to further investigate the incident.

The incident did not hinder students from attending classes as usual and no events were canceled as there seemed to be no threat that would prevent them. The incident was a topic of discussion for only a short while, however.

Both campus residents and commuters have carried on as if nothing happened. And at this point, the topic seems to be a distant memory.

Still, the idea of a gun fired on campus leaves an unsettling feeling to some students.

Grethel Guzman-Ruck, a resident of Hickory, finds the incident concerning. “It’s just scary. When you get accustomed, you forget the reality that anything can happen at any moment.” While she did not hear anything, she says her friend did.

Still, Guzman-Ruck attends class regularly and carries on as normal.

Also living in Hickory is Stefen Welch. Welch thinks that the issue is larger than the incident on the UMass Dartmouth Campus.

He thinks this is an issue on a larger scale. “I live in Hickory so I’m not in the Dells. But, I think we as a humanity really need to think hard on our gun laws people,” he said. “People should not be able to walk on a college campus with a firearm. That just spells bad news for everyone.”

Campus residents are not the only people affected by this. Commuters have also shown concern, but have not let it hinder their studies.

“I feel like I don’t know enough of the situation from the emails that they’ve sent out, but regardless a gun on campus should not be taken lightly,” said Kayla Medeiros, a UMass Dartmouth commuter. “I’m not sure about how they’re searching for it, but hopefully they have answers soon.”

But as time goes on, students seem to view the issue as a thing of the past already. Autumn Ross, a resident of Evergreen would say that people have largely forgotten about it, “People have been just going about their day, like it didn’t even happen.”

While the investigation is still pending, Ross thinks some sort of lock down should have taken place for a search in the event a campus resident is the owner of it.

“Well I would have liked it if they had done some kind of search or lock down to look for the gun. I’m a bit uneasy knowing someone could have a gun on them.”

As the investigation continues, the Department of Public Safety issued a statement urging anyone with information on the October 16 incident to come forward.

DPS can be contacted at 508-999-9191, the silent witness line can be found by calling 508.999.8477, and confidential form can be filled out at this site.

Photo Courtesy: DPS

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