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Three Wounded, Gunman Dead After Florida State University Shooting

FSU
An armed police officer stands in the Strozier library. Twitter

Just after midnight at the Florida State University Strozier Library, shots broke out as a gunman entered the lobby. Polce believe the gunman may have also fired before entering the library. The gunman, identified by an anonymous source to The Associated Press as alumni Myron May, wounded three students before Tallahassee Police officers shot and killed him. Police officers asked May to drop the weapon, a handgun, and comply with commands, the gunman did neither and shot at officers.

May attended FSU for undergraduate studies and went to Texas Tech University for law school and was a resident of Wewahitchka, Florida. 

At an early morning press conference, Policy Chief Michael DeLeo confirmed the gunman acted alone. Police estimate they were able to respond to the threat "in minutes" as the university's alert program went into effect immediately. 

The library was particularly crowded as students studied for final exams - an estimated 300 to 400 students were in Strozier at the time. As the incident unfolded, many students posted on social media from inside the library to show they were safe and communicate updates. Alex Lauren, who describes herself as a Florida State University student on her Twitter account, tweeted: "The gunman was in the lobby and I was sitting in the 1st floor Starbucks. The entire 1st floor went into chaos. I can't believe this." Another student posted Instagram videos from within the library, sounds of sirens and police instructions were heard over the intercom system.

video recording showed dozens of students packed behind bookshelves as police over the intercom said: "There has been a shooting in the library. Stay where you are. We will be coming to explore, clear and take care of anybody. If anybody has a victim, if anybody has been shot, call 911 on your cell phone. If you have not been shot, or you do not know someone who is armed, do not call 911. If you know somebody has a gun or who has been shot, call 911." 

Jason Derfuss, a Florida State student, was a target of the gunman but survived the attack thanks to some books in his backpack. He wrote on his Facebook, " The shot I heard behind me I did not feel, nor did it hit me at all. He was about 5 feet from me, but he hit my books. Books one minute earlier I had checked out of the library, books that should not have stopped the bullet. But they did. I learned this about 3 hours after it happened, I never thought to check my bag. I assumed I wasn't a target, I assumed I was fine."

After the gunfire began, students scattered in various directions, some down fire escapes. The remaining students were evacuated after police secured the library. Five officers from two different forces dealt with the gunman, it is not yet known if all five shot him. Florida State University President John Thrasher said in a statement: “The three students who have been injured are our highest priority followed by the needs of our greater university community. We will do everything possible to assist their recovery.” He called the shooting a “senseless incident”. 

Of the three victims, one is in critical condition, another stable and a third was treated at the scene for a minor "grazing injury". The students have not been named, their families were notified by the univeristy around 5:30 am. 

The campus was put on lockdown for sometime after the incident. Perry Kostidakis, sports editor of the campus newspaper told CNN, "The entire campus is empty; I've seen one or two people come up and look at the scene. Everyone who is in a campus building is under lockdown right now. Policemen are still surrounding the library." Classes were canceled today. 

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