By: Cory Kefauver, Associate Editor
The Towson University Police Department (TUPD) announced this morning that three people were shot in Freedom Square, the academic area on campus, Sept. 4 at approximately 2 a.m.
Towson University released a statement this morning detailing that a large group of students were gathered at Freedom Square, shots were fired and three people were injured. The injuries are non-life threatening.
“At this time, the scene is secure; however, we’re encouraging everyone, including all students, to remain away from the academic part of campus as police activity is ongoing,” the statement reads.
An updated statement from President Schatzel and Vice President Hurte indicated that one victim is a female TU student, while the other two are not affiliated with the University.
“The female student was treated at an area hospital, is stable and is recovering alongside family,” the statement reads.
TU’s Office of Public Safety, TUPD, and the Baltimore County Police Department are conducting an investigation on the shooting. There is no new information regarding the suspect at this time. Baltimore County Police Chief Melissa Hyatt gave a statement to WBAL confirming that there is no active threat currently on campus.
“I want to remind all of you that this is an ongoing and fluid investigation,” Hyatt said. “There is very little in terms of details to report right now.”
According to TU junior Seth Lampel, the crowd gathered at Freedom Square after relocating from the Cellar 2 venue in Parkville, MD. According to Lampel there was an event called “We Back!: the official Morgan and Towson back to school party.”
“The party started about 15 minutes away at Cellar 2 in a shopping center but it was moved because people were supposedly flashing guns,” Lampel said. “In general it was very rowdy there with people being impatient about getting into the venue.”
Lampel says that everyone at the event knew to move to Freedom Square because the promoter was posting to social media about it. The Towerlight found that the promoter’s social media account is now private, and cannot confirm these posts.
“So it was already a suspicious situation with the amount of noise being made at Freedom Square when it moved over,” Lampel said. “Plus the giant influx of people coming over and finding parking, I was very surprised that there was not one Towson Police Officer there.”
A video of the crowd at freedom square has been circulating Twitter.
TU junior Brandon Wyatt, who was present in freedom square at the time of the shooting, recalls feeling terrified when hearing the gunshots.
“It was just a messed up situation and it had to happen in one of my favorite area on campus,” Wyatt said.
TU junior Marcus Smith was in the vicinity of the shooting at the time, and believes TUPD responded to the scene quickly.
“I’ve always had my speculations if campus police were actually a help or not, but I can say now for sure that they did an excellent job being there and responding so fast,” Smith said.
TU sophomore Bradley Comer chose to attend school at Towson because he was sold on the idea of safety on campus. Now, he isn’t so sure.
“One of the main reasons I chose to go to Towson was because of how much the safety of campus was stressed to us during my visit,” Comer said. “So this is definitely not something I was hoping to see during my time here.”
Wyatt indicated his concern for the safety of students the next time they gather in Freedom Square.
“I would like to see TUPD ban those inappropriate DJ parties from this campus and only allow Towson students to be part of those parties and not other campuses,” Wyatt said. “I want everybody to stay alive when they go out.”
Staff from Student Affairs, the Counseling Center, and Housing & Residence Life are on campus to provide support for students and community members. TU’s Counseling Center can be reached at 410-704-2515.
TUPD is asking anyone with information about the shooting to call 410-704-4444.
– This article will be updated as more information becomes available.