Slain Virginia Tech officer identified
This is a running timeline of events from today’s shooting at Virginia Tech. For a summary of the story so far, click here.
10:04 p.m. Police have confirmed that the second person found dead was visible in footage taken from Crouse’s car. Click here for more information.
9:52 p.m. Virginia Tech President Charles Steger has issued his condolences in a letter to the community. Here’s the release – http://www.vtnews.vt.edu/articles/2011/12/120811-unirel-stegerstatement.html
9:18 p.m. The Virginia Tech police officer slain Thursday has been identified as Deriek W. Crouse, 39, of Christiansburg. He joined the Tech police department Oct. 27, 2007, and served in the patrol division. Here’s the full release with photo.
6:42 p.m.: Virginia Tech issues revised exam schedule: The final exams that were originally scheduled for Friday will take place on Saturday, Dec. 10 in their originally scheduled rooms and at the originally scheduled times. Regular final exam schedule will resume on Monday, Dec 12. Faculty members are asked to use their best judgement to make accommodations where appropriate.
6:35 p.m.: Former Gov. Tim Kaine, who was in office during the April 16 shootings, issues the following: I am relieved that today’s emergency situation at Virginia Tech appears to be resolved. I extend my deepest condolences to the family, friends, and colleagues of the campus police officer killed in the line of duty today. The Virginia Tech family, the Town of Blacksburg, and Montgomery County have faced tragedy too often in recent years. I feel particularly for the area’s law enforcement community who do great work every day but have seen another colleague lose his life in service. I commend all those who took proactive steps today to ensure campus safety.”
6:21 p.m.: Rep. Bob Goodlatte, R-Roanoke County, issues this statement: “I was deeply saddened to learn of the senseless act of violence that took place on the campus of Virginia Tech this afternoon. My thoughts and prayers are with the families of the victim and the entire Virginia Tech community.”
6:02 p.m.: Virginia Tech advises: Cook Counseling Center’s main office in McComas Hall will be open until 9 tonight for any students needing assistance. The center’s main office and the satellite office in East Eggleston Hall will have counselors available for students all day Friday. The center will determine later if Saturday hours will be added. The center can be reached by phone at 540-231-6557.
Staff and employees can contact Value Options at 866-775-0602 or can call 231-9331 to speak with a counselor on Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
5:59 p.m.: Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va., issues the following statement: “I was saddened to learn of the tragic shooting today and of the officer who lost his life in the line of duty. I would like to express my deepest condolences to the family of the officer who was slain, and to the entire Virginia Tech community, especially its leaders and police force. Tech is one of the Commonwealth’s finest universities, recognized nationwide for its first-rate faculty, staff and students, and its officials demonstrated that excellence today through their handling of this difficult situation.”
5:44 p.m.: Multiple tweets say there’s a vigil at 8 p.m. at the April 16 memorial on campus; awaiting confirmation.
5:36 p.m.: Universities release statements about today’s shooting:
Texas Tech University:
Texas Tech University System Chancellor Kent Hance:
“The Texas Tech University System is saddened to learn of the tragic events which unfolded on the Virginia Tech campus in Blacksburg, Virginia, today. Devastating situations like these impact us all, and we extend our support and sympathy to the town, community and Virginia Tech family. They all will be in our thoughts and prayers.”
Texas Tech University President Guy Bailey:
“On behalf of Texas Tech University, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies and prayers to the Virginia Tech community. Loss of life is always tragic, and our heartfelt support goes out to our colleagues and fellow students in Blacksburg. Our thoughts also are with the families and friends of the victims.”
5:23 p.m.: Police say they don’t think gunman had any relation to the traffic stop.
5:21: State Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli issues this statement: “Virginia Tech and law enforcement on the ground have the resources of my office at their disposal. We are in contact with our staff at the university and we are continually monitoring the situation.
“Today’s loss of a Virginia Tech police officer serves as a painful reminder of the risks that law enforcement face in the field. I have a tremendous appreciation for campus police, state police, local police and sheriffs, and all our members of law enforcement and their willingness to put their lives on the line each day to ensure the safety of the people of the commonwealth.
“Our prayers are for peace for the families of the slain.”
5:20 p.m.: Rep. Robert Hurt, R-Chatham, releases this statement: “We are very saddened to learn about the tragic events that took place at Virginia Tech today. Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims, their families, and all of those that are part of the Virginia Tech community on this sad day.”
5:16 p.m.: Police say they don’t know motive for shooting.
5:14 p.m.: Police say investigation will likely take “weeks.”
5:12 p.m.: Police say second victim was white male, dead from gunshot wound. No further ID at this time.
5:09 p.m.: Police won’t confirm number of shooters but say they believe community is safe. They say “read between the lines” about speculation on murder-suicide.
5:06 p.m.: Virginia Tech President Charles Steger says he was notified “within minutes” of incident. He was out of town at the time.
5:02 p.m.: Police say connection with Wednesday’s Radford incident is a “possibility” that is under investigation.
4:59 p.m.: Believed to be first time a Tech officer killed in line of duty.
4:59 p.m.: Tech officials working on new exam schedule, may be released as early as tonight.
4:57 p.m.: Police saw suspicious person alive in parking lot before finding him dead.
4:54 p.m.: Police say shooter was NOT the motorist stopped at a routine traffic stop.
4:51 p.m.: Police will not confirm suspicions that second victim was the gunman.
4:49 p.m.: Police say they don’t know if report of suspicious activity at Radford rest stop was related or not.
4:48 p.m.: Police say weapon recovered near second crime scene, type of weapon not revealed at this time.
4:48 p.m.: Slain Virginia Tech police officer not being identified at this time. The officer killed was a 4 year veteran of the VT Police. He was assigned to the patrol division, says Virginia State Police
4:47 p.m.: Police had no “credible” reports after finding second person dead.
4:45 p.m.: Police say witnesses saw suspect fire at officer.
4:42 p.m.: Tech president Charles Steger says police officer “murdered during a routine traffic stop.”
4:31 p.m.: Virginia Tech says: Law enforcement agencies have determined there is no longer an active threat or need to secure in place. Resume normal activities.
4:29 p.m.: Montgomery County schools says all after-school activities are cancelled at all schools.
Adventure Club and after-school child care is canceled at: Gilbert Linkous, Kipps, Harding Avenue and Margaret Beeks. After school child care will run as scheduled at all other locations.
4:25 p.m. All youth basketball practices and aerobic classes scheduled for tonight at the Christiansburg Recreation Center are canceled. All Montgomery County Public School practices and games are also canceled tonight.
4:24 p.m.: Sgt. Rob Carpentieri said Virginia State Police had closed the rest area near Exit 107 at Radford after they received tips of suspicious activity going on there.
Carpentieri declined to elaborate on the nature of the reports and said he was not sure whether the witness was still being interviewed or not.
4:23 p.m.: We’ve added more photos to the photo gallery showing the police presence on campus today.
4:09 p.m.: Gov. Bob McDonnell has issued the following statement:
“I am deeply saddened by today’s news of another tragedy affecting the Virginia Tech community. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those impacted by these shootings. Since this news first broke we have been monitoring the situation closely and I have made available all requested state resources to Virginia Tech, including the Virginia State Police. I have also spoken to Virginia Tech President Charles Steger earlier this afternoon.
I want to thank the multiple law enforcement agencies and all of the officers for their speedy response and focus during this difficult time. I also want to commend Virginia Tech leadership, students, faculty and staff who cooperated to efficiently respond to this emergency.
While we will await the completion of the initial investigation of this incident before commenting further, I want to again offer our continued support to all of those impacted by this tragedy. Virginia Tech is a university of great resolve, and I have no doubt that the students, alumni and faculty of this proud institution will emerge from this sad day stronger and more united than ever before. There will continue to be needs in the days ahead as we move forward from this situation and I will ensure that those needs are met completely and fully by the Commonwealth.”
A release from Montgomery County Public Schools:
Starting at 3:30 p.m. schools in Montgomery County will begin student dismissal while following all reasonable safety precautions. Middle and high schools will dismiss first, followed by elementary schools once the secondary bus runs are complete. For students who ride the bus, parents across all grade levels should expect transportation delays of 60-90 minutes later than their student’s usual bus arrival time. For those who wish to pick up their students, schools within the Town of Blacksburg dismiss once police presence has arrived to the school location. Parents at all other school locations may now begin to pick up their students in an orderly manner. Bus transportation will continue for all schools with a 60-90 minute delay expected. Thank you for your patience as we have continued to handle this situation.
3:30 p.m.: Christiansburg High School’s football team will not hold a practice today as Montgomery County schools remain in lockdown in the wake of the fatal shooting at Virginia Tech.
Christiansburg head football coach Tim Cromer said the school has made a preliminary arrangement to practice Friday afternoon on the artificial turf field at Salem High School..
Christiansburg plays Briar Woods for the VHSL Group AA Division 4 championship at 4:30 p.m. Saturday at Liberty University in Lynchburg.
“I’m going to have to revamp our schedule and squeeze two days into one because we’ve lost a day of contact,” Cromer said. “But this is not an issue for us. We’ve been practicing for four months. We know what we’re doing. The rest might be a good thing.
“There are obviously more important things going on than our deal. We’ll be fine.”
Cromer said Christiansburg still plans to meet at 10:15 a.m. Saturday at the high school to prepare to depart for the trip to Lynchburg.
3:19 p.m.: Virginia Tech reports: There are no new substantiated reports of suspicious or criminial activity. Status of the shooter remains unknown.
3.06 p.m.: Virginia Tech postpones exams set for Dec. 9.
2:59 p.m.: Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Salem, whose district includes Virginia Tech, has released the following statement: “My thoughts and prayers are with the entire Virginia Tech community and the Town of Blacksburg as we continue to learn more about the shooting on campus today,” said Congressman Griffith. “I hope you will join me in lifting up the Hokie Nation in prayer.”
2:56 p.m.: Virginia Tech will hold news conference at 4:30 p.m.
2:47 p.m.: Virginia Tech news conference set for later today.
2:45 p.m.: There could be as many as 200 police officers on campus, according to officials.
2:12 p.m.: All Montgomery County schools are on lockdown shooting investigation continues.
2:10 p.m.: We’ve added more photos from the scene.
Statement from Virginia Tech- 1:51 p.m.
Shortly after 12 p.m. today, a Virginia Tech Police officer stopped a vehicle on campus during a routine traffic stop in the Coliseum parking lot near McComas Hall
During the traffic stop, the officer was shot and killed. There were witnesses to this shooting.
Witnesses reported to police the shooter fled on foot heading toward the Cage, a parking lot near Duck Pond Drive. At that parking lot, a second person was found. That person is also deceased.
Several law enforcement agencies have responded to assist. Virginia State police has been requested to take lead in the investigation
Status of the shooter is unknown. The campus community should continue to shelter in place and visitors should not come to campus.
1:37 p.m. What we know now:
A police officer was shot on Virginia Tech’s campus today, and the suspect remains at large as police cordon off a portion of the university campus. There may be a second victim as well.
Tech’s alert system reported at 12:37 p.m. that shots had been fired in the Coliseum parking lot and urged people to stay inside and secure their doors.
Later the university reported an officer had been shot and that there was a second possible shooting victim in the Cage parking lot near the end of Washington Street.
Heavily armed police officers were seen running through the area around the roundabout at the end of Washington Street, and officers searched cars around the Cage. At the Coliseum, what appeared to be a body was covered with a cloth in a taped-off area of the parking lot. Officers there told a dozen student-age onlookers to leave for their own safety.
Tech students Rachel Dallman and Jake Desmarais were enjoying lunch when they heard about the shooting. They stood in the Cassell Coliseum lot 50 feet from a taped off area where a body was covered.
Desmarais was stunned, called the news “shocking,” while Dallman was upset that such an event took place on Reading Day, which would otherwise be a quiet, routine segway into the holidays.
“What’s going on, why? In broad daylight and on Reading Day?” she said.
Reporter Lerone Graham tweets photo of a body under a sheet: http://lockerz.com/s/163121367
Virginia Tech reports: A police officer has been shot. A potential second victim is reported at the Cage lot. Stay indoors. Secure in place.
Click here for updates.