One dead, three injured in on-campus shooting

This article was last updated at 9:17 p.m. on June 8.

At around 3:30 p.m. on Thursday, Seattle Pacific University issued a campus-wide lockdown for around an hour after an unidentified shooter entered Otto Miller Hall with a shotgun and shot four people, killing one and wounding three others. The victims were SPU students.

According to reports from the Seattle Police Department, SPU senior Jon Meis pepper-sprayed the 26-year-old shooter while he paused to reload. Several bystanders then tackled the shooter and took his gun. The shooter was also carrying a knife and extra rounds of ammunition.

In an effort to share the bravery shown by witnesses of the shooting, SPD has released the 911 audio. The audio is chilling and somewhat graphic. You can go here to listen to the 911 calls.

On Twitter, many students herald Meis as a hero. Screen Shot 2014-06-06 at 8.51.57 AM

“I’m proud of the selfless action that my roomate, Jon Meis, showed today taking down the shooter. He is a hero #prayforSPU #SPUshooting,” @MattJamesGarcia said.

SPD identified the shooter as Aaron R. Ybarra of Mountlake Terrace. Ybarra is not a student at SPU. He was booked into King County Jail early Friday morning for investigation of murder.

A King County Superior Court Judge found probable cause to hold Ybarra without bail during his initial court appearance on Friday afternoon. According to a statement filed in court, Ybarra admitted to detectives after his arrest that he wanted to kill as many people as possible before killing himself.

On Thursday, SPD arrived on campus within four minutes of the first report of the shooting and contacted medics. All four victims were taken to Harborview Medical Center.

At around 8:30 p.m. on Thursday, Harborview doctors said that the first victim who had arrived at the hospital had died. SPU students later identified the victim as freshman Paul Lee, a 19-year old resident on Fifth West Ashton. Senior Thomas Fowler and sophmore Sarah Williams were also hospitalized.

Sophmore Sarah Williams via Instagram

Friends say sophmore Sarah Williams had a creative side to her. Photo taken from Instagram

Fowler was in stable condition and released from Harborview on Friday. He suffered pellet fragments to his neck, chin and side of his upper extremities.

Early Sunday morning, Williams was moved out of Harborview’s Intensive Care Unit. Though still in serious condition, she is conscious and breathing on her own. Thursday night, she underwent a five hour surgery for chest and abdominal wounds from a shotgun blast.

Meis was also checked into Harborview Thursday night. He was not physically injured and was released shortly after.

This is a June 6 Facebook post by one of Lee's family members, Tim Lee.

This is a June 6 Facebook post by one of Lee’s family members, Tim Lee. Paul Lee is the leftmost person.

Initially, police received reports of a second suspect. These reports were later determined false. Police have not determined any connections between the suspect, SPU or any of the victims.

“The SPU community is certainly saddened by the events today, by this tragedy and senseless act that we’ve experienced as a community,” President Daniel J. Martin said. “…We’re pulling together as a campus community, offering support and counseling for our students, our families.”

Late Thursday night, an hour-long, student-led candlelight vigil started at midnight. Two male students led the vigil, singing worship songs, reading from the Bible and leading prayers.

There were more than 100 students at the vigil, all crowded on the center lawn of Tiffany Loop. Throughout the vigil, students started prayers and songs. At one point, the students mumbled through an unfamiliar verse of a song together and broke out in laughter.

A blog, titled,  has been started in response to yesterday’s shootings. It is unclear who the author and/or blog owner is.

On Lee’s Facebook page, family, friends and classmates have started to share thoughts and memories about him.

This story is developing. More to come.

This article was posted in the section News and tagged .
Alex Cnossen

Editor-in-Chief Alex Cnossen is a junior journalism major.

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