Shooter identified as part-time Radford student from Spotsylvania County
This is a running timeline of the latest headlines today on the Virginia Tech police shooting. For more details, see our breaking news post on roanoke.com.
We have links to today’s stories — plus a photo gallery — at the bottom of this post.
6:03 p.m.: Virgnia Tech says state police have identified the shooter as a part-time Radford University student from Spotsylvania County. Investigators have confirmed that Ross Truett Ashley, 22, of Partlow, Va., took his own life approximately a half-hour after fatally shooting a Virginia Tech Police
Officer. Ashley also had a local residence in the 1000 block of East Main Street in Radford.At this time, there remains no prior connection or contact between Ashley, who was enrolled part-time at Radford University, and the Virginia Tech Officer he killed.
You can read the full statement here.
5:35 p.m.: Virginia Tech announces: Funeral services for Virginia Tech Police Officer Deriek W. Crouse will be at 2 p.m. Monday at Cassell Coliseum. Details here.
12:38 p.m.: Virginia Tech issues these details on a memorial fund:
A memorial fund has been established to support the needs of the family of Deriek Crouse, the Virginia Tech Police officer who was fatally shot Thursday, Dec. 8, 2011. Those wishing to contribute can mail checks, payable to “Deriek Crouse Memorial Fund,” to the address below:
National Bank of Blacksburg
Attn: Dana Sutphin
P.O. Box 90002
Blacksburg, VA 24062-9002
Those seeking more information about the fund should call 540-552-2011 and ask to speak with Dana Sutphin, branch manager.
Expressions of support or condolence for the Crouse family can be sent to email@example.com.
12 noon: State Police said this morning there was “likelihood” the police is shooting tied to the carjacking in Radford on Wednesday. However, Radford police have just declined to comment on any possible connection.
11:07 a.m.: Here’s a summary of what we know so far:
Investigators believe the gunman who killed a Virginia Tech policeman acted alone and that he changed clothes after fleeing the scene, then killed himself with his handgun when another officer spotted him, state police said Friday.
Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said investigators have not found anything connecting the gunman and the slain officer, Deriek W. Crouse, who was shot in his car on a campus parking lot after pulling over a driver for a traffic stop. The motive remains a mystery, she said.
Police are investigating the “likelihood” that the shooter was connected to Wednesday’s carjacking in Radford.
The gunman was not a student at Virginia Tech, the scene of the deadliest gun rampage in modern U.S. history in 2007. Geller said investigators were confidant they know the gunman’s identity but she declined to say anything more about his name, age or hometown until the medical examiner confirms his identity and next of kin are notified.
11:03 a.m.: News conference has now ended.
11 a.m.: Police don’t know why driver was pulled over in traffic stop; officers typically don’t give details to dispatch when they pull someone over.
11 a.m.: Driver pulled over in traffic stop remained at scene after police shooting.
10:59 a.m.: Police interviewed everyone at Radford rest area that was closed; no connection.
10:57 a.m.: Shooter’s backpack found outside the greenhouses.
10:55 a.m.: Tech spokesman Larry Hincker says he doesn’t feel less safe at Tech than on any other campus.
10:53 a.m.: Blacksburg Transit will have weekday schedule on Saturday due to exams being rescheduled.
10:52 a.m.: Police have no indication that shooter threatened anyone else.
10:51 a.m.: Several hours passed between when body found in Cage and alerted lifted because police wanted to be sure he was shooter.
10:48 a.m.: Police will not say whether victim of Radford carjacking has helped ID the shooter.
10:47 a.m.: Police dashcam video will not be released, under Va. state law.
10:46 a.m.: Police spent lot of time responding to “multiple” reports of shots fired, all unconfirmed.
10:42 a.m.: Police will not discuss how shooter approached officer.
10:41 a.m.: Police say only that subject was making “furtive” movements in Cage parking lot.
10:38 a.m.: Police: Officer still in car when he was shot.
10:37 a.m.: ID found in backpack.
10:36 a.m.: Police have no info that shooter intended other targets.
10:34 a.m.: No ID found on shooter.
10:33 a.m.: Deputy pursuing subject in parking lot lost sight of him, then found him dead. No one witnessed shooting.
10:32 a.m.: Police have found vehicle involved in Radford carjacking.
10:31 a.m.: Police investigating writing found on wall near where backpack found.
10:30 a.m.: Police don’t know how long shooter had been on campus.
10:26 a.m.: Virginia Tech spokesman says incident does not change university’s position on not wanting guns in classrooms.
10:23 a.m.: Police will not release info on shooter at this time, pending investigation.
10:23 a.m.: Tech student pulled over in traffic stop had no connection to the shooter; has been extremely cooperative with police.
10:22 a.m.: Officer was unable to return fire.
10:21 a.m.: Police say there is a “likelihood” that shooter was connected to Radford carjacking on Wednesday.
10:21 a.m.: Police have no indication shooter knew the slain officer.
10:19 a.m.: Memorial fund set up through National Bank of Blacksburg; funeral arrangements underway.
10:17 a.m.: State police and other local police will assist Virginia Tech with patrols in coming days.
10:16 a.m.: Police piecing together timeline of whereabouts of the gunman. Motive still unknown.
10:14 a.m.: “We know who” the man found dead in parking lot is.
10:14 a.m.: Man found dead in parking lot had changed clothes. Dead from “self-inflicted” gunshot wound.
10:13 a.m.: Weapon found near second victim was a handgun.
10:12 a.m.: Virginia Tech says any news will be posted on Tech’s website:
10:08 a.m.: Rep. Morgan Griffith, R-Salem, whose district includes Virginia Tech, has issued the following statement:
“My deepest sympathies are with the family of Officer Deriek W. Crouse, the Virginia Tech Police Department, and the entire Hokie Nation. I was terribly saddened to learn that Officer Crouse, a father, husband, son, brother, and veteran, was killed yesterday in the line of duty. A four-year veteran of the Virginia Tech Police Department, Officer Crouse was dedicated to serving and protecting the students at Virginia Tech. This tragic event is a stark reminder of the many dangers law enforcement personnel face on a daily basis. I continue to keep the Virginia Tech and Blacksburg communities in my prayers. Officer Crouse will not be forgotten.
“Any tragedy is difficult to understand, but yesterday’s events are especially trying for the Virginia Tech community that has already experienced so much heartbreak. I want to thank federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies for their assistance. Quick responses from the University and these agencies helped to ensure the safety of those on campus.”
10:04 a.m.: The shooter was not a student, university spokesman Larry Hincker said.
9:30 a.m.: Bodies of Officer Deriek Crouse and still-unidentified apparent shooter were taken to medical examiner for autopsy
9:27 a.m.: Virginia State police say a Montgomery County deputy saw a man in the Cage parking lot, but when he reached him, man was dead on ground with handgun nearby. Thirty minutes elapsed between the police officer being shot and the second body being found.
9:24 a.m.: State police say backpack found at horticulture greenhouse between Coliseum (Crouse shooting) & Cage (apparent shooter’s body found). It contained clothes consistent with those worn by shooter in video from Officer Deriek Crouse’s car.
9:22 a.m.: Virginia State Police say Virginia Tech shooter may be publicly identified mid-morning today.
9:20 a.m.: Virginia and the Virginia State Police have scheduled a 10 a.m. press conference at Lane Stadium’s Schott Media Room re: yesterday’s shooting.
9:06 a.m.: Ballistics evidence testing has officially linked the two fatal shootings that occurred Thursday on the Virginia Tech campus, according to a news release issued by the university this morning.
Testing conducted by the Virginia Department of Forensic Science has confirmed that Virginia Tech police officer Deriek Crouse — who was killed in the Cassell Coliseum parking lot — and an unidentified man found nearby a short time later were shot by the same weapon. We have more details on roanoke.com.
OTHER STORIES ON THE VIRGINIA TECH POLICE SHOOTING:
* Main story in Friday’s paper: Campus seeks answers after police offer shot
* Running timeline of Thursday’s events
* Reaction from around campus
* Virginia Tech praised for quickly sending alerts
* Social media was fountain of information, true and false
* Virginia Tech police chief testifies at Clery hearing
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