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Police: Wyoming murder-suicide happened during class


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Walsh said 33 law enforcement officers from different agencies responded to the college after receiving reports of the attack. He said authorities first thought it might have been an "active-shooter-type situation."

"We quickly contained the building and started a sweep through the building," he said.

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Walsh said that within minutes of the initial call, there was another report of a traumatic injury about two miles southwest of campus. That victim was found in the street, the Star-Tribune reported.

Classes were canceled for the day. A meeting was held in the afternoon for the 150 teachers and students who remained. College president Walt Nolte addressed them, calling it the worst day of his more than 40 years in higher education. He encouraged the community to come together, Fujita said

"It is particularly painful because of our size," Fujita said of the small, tight-knit campus.

Counselors were speaking to students and planned to be available through the weekend. About 450 students live on campus.

Classes were to resume on Monday.

"We agreed it doesn’t do any good to just set the students loose. It makes the most sense to have them come back to campus, where they can get help if they need help and come to terms with what happened," Fujita said.

Walsh said police train for such incidents but had no warning of the violence.

Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead, who went to the campus Friday evening, said it was too early to assess security precautions at the college.


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"There’s no sense in doing that now until we understand fully what has taken place," he said.

Mead added: "The focus now should be on the victims’ family, the community college family, the president, the trustees and the students, and making sure we’re attending to any of their needs."

Casper College opened in 1945 as the state’s first junior college and moved to its current site 10 years later. The campus consists of 28 buildings on more than 200 acres. The college provides more than 140 academic-transfer, technical and career programs.

Wyoming has only one four-year university, the University of Wyoming in Laramie, which serves more than 13,000 students.

Casper is Wyoming’s second-largest city with a population of about 56,000. Wyoming residents refer to it as the "Oil City" because it’s a hub for the state’s oil industry.



Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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