|Contact:||John J. Glisch, Associate Vice President, Communications|
|Office:||321-433-7017 Cell: 321-794-0324|
January 30, 2014 - One person was shot today and a second injured on the Palm Bay campus of Eastern Florida State College following a fight between a student and two men.
The incident occurred shortly before 2 p.m. in the campus parking lot when a student who was in his car was approached by two men who pulled up in another vehicle.
One of the men got out of the car and began beating the student with a pool cue. The student pulled a handgun from his car, shooting and wounding the man in the chest.
Campus Security officers were on the scene within seconds and Palm Bay Police arrived about one minute later, securing the area.
The shooting victim and injured student were taken to local hospitals for treatment. The student was later released and the shooting victim was listed in stable condition.
The student has been identified as Landrick Hamilton, 24, of Palm Bay. Hamilton has been a full time student at the college since 2013 studying chemical technology.
He has no history of disciplinary problems at the college.
The Palm Bay campus was locked down during incident, and emergency alert messages were posted on the college’s website and sent via text message to all students, faculty and staff telling them to remain in place with doors locked.
The lockdown was lifted after police declared the area safe. Classes on the Palm Bay campus were canceled for the rest of the week, including those for the University of Central Florida which also offers courses there.
All classes will resume Monday.
The Palm Bay Police Department is conducting an investigation into the shooting with the full cooperation of Eastern Florida State College officials.
Palm Bay police will be releasing more information as their investigation continues.
“We are deeply grateful for the rapid and courageous response of our Campus Security officers and the Palm Bay Police Department in the incident,” said college President Dr. Jim Richey. “The safety of our students, faculty and staff is paramount and we are fortunate no one else was injured.”
The incident comes following a Florida appeals court ruling last week that struck down a University of North Florida policy that banned keeping firearms in cars on campus.
Some Florida universities have since changed their policies to allow guns in cars on campus, but Eastern Florida State College has kept its ban in place pending a final court rehearing of the UNF case.
Eastern Florida State College policy prohibits weapons anywhere on its four campuses, with the following stated in the college’s governing policy manual and in the Student Code of Conduct:
“Students may not possess weapons while on college property (law enforcement officers excluded.) Weapons are defined as firearms, knives, explosives, flammable materials or any other items that may cause bodily injury or damage to property.”
The college will have counselors available for faculty, staff or students who may
need them starting at 7 a.m. Monday on the Palm Bay campus. They will be available
all day until 5 p.m. in Building 2, Room 159