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Indian-American professor, two others shot dead at U.S. campus

Amy Bishop is taken into custody by Huntsville, Alabama police on Friday in connection with fatal shootings on the University of Alabama in Huntsville campus.

Amy Bishop is taken into custody by Huntsville, Alabama police on Friday in connection with fatal shootings on the University of Alabama in Huntsville campus.   | Photo Credit: Dave Dieter

A woman opened fire during a biology faculty meeting at a southern U.S. campus on Friday, killing three biology professors and injuring three other employees at the school, officials said. Authorities say Amy Bishop, an instructor and researcher at the University of Alabama’s Huntsville campus, opened fire during an afternoon faculty meeting.

Bishop has been charged with one count of capital murder, which means she could face the death penalty if convicted.

She was taken on Friday night in handcuffs from a police precinct to the county jail and could be heard saying, “It didn’t happen. There’s no way .... they are still alive.”

The shooter was caught without incident at the University of Alabama’s Huntsville campus, outside a science building, and no students were harmed, according to university spokesman Ray Garner. Local media reported the shooter was a faculty member, though Garner said he could not identify her. Officials said a man was also being detained.

University spokesman Ray Garner said the three killed were Gopi K. Podila, the chairman of the Department of Biological Sciences, and two other faculty members, Maria Ragland Davis and Adriel Johnson.

Two others are in critical condition, and a third who was wounded was upgraded to fair condition. The injured were identified as department members Luis Cruz-Vera and Joseph Leahy and staffer Stephanie Monticello. Their specific conditions were not released.

University police secured the building and students were cleared from it. There was still a heavy police presence on campus Friday night, with police tape cordoning off the main entrance to the university.

The Huntsville campus has about 7,500 students in northern Alabama, not far from the Tennessee line. The university is known for its scientific and engineering programs and often works closely with NASA.

The university posted a message on its Web site Friday afternoon telling students the campus was closed Friday night and all students were encouraged to go home. Counsellors were available to speak with students.

It’s the second shooting in a week on an area campus. Last Friday, a 14-year-old student was killed in a middle school hallway in nearby Madison, allegedly by a fellow student.

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Printable version | Jun 3, 2020 2:34:20 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/Indian-American-professor-two-others-shot-dead-at-U.S.-campus/article16814294.ece

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