Police respond to shooting near VSU campus - WNEM TV 5

Police respond to shooting near VSU campus

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ETTRICK, VA (WWBT) -

The search is on for whoever shot and wounded a teenager overnight near the Virginia State University campus. It happened on Williams Street near East River Road just after 3 a.m. Friday. The school wasted no time securing the campus but the shooter is still on the loose.

Moments after the shooting university administrators sent out an alert notifying students what happened and encouraging them to take precautions. Any students who were in their dorms at the time were asked to stay there.

NBC12 was on the scene as police officers surrounded a home on Williams Rd. It's just three doors away from Virginia State's campus.

"VSU has been in the news a lot recently," said student Morgan Pollard.

It's why Friday's shooting concerned her.

"I initially didn't know what was going on," she said.
  
Neighbors say a party had just ended in the area before they heard gunfire. An 18-year-old, not affiliated with the school, was shot in the leg. He had to be rushed to the hospital where he's expected to pull through. At the door of the home that police surrounded earlier in the day, someone peeped through a front window later that afternoon never answered.

When it comes to students' safety, VSU officials say they've improved lighting throughout campus, installed cameras inside buildings and outdoors, and hired additional officers who are stepping up patrols.

"I do feel safe especially knowing they've set up these new precautions for us," Pollard added.

But that's not always the case at a nearby beauty salon.

"Sometimes we work here late at night and were sort of scared too," said Artie Sizemore.

The shop keeps its doors locked with burglar bars surrounding the entrance. It's on the same street where the teen was shot.

"You never know what the shooting was all about. Somebody might have had a vendetta out against somebody," Sizemore said.

Whatever the case, students want criminals to stay away as they try to start this year on the right foot.

"We can't help that it was right across the street from my school," Pollard said.
  
But since the shooting happened so close to campus, the university is reminding students to always use good judgment and be aware of their surroundings.

VSU briefly restricted access to the campus but resumed normal operations a few hours after the shooting.

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