Ohio State attack: Suspect dead, 11 hospitalized

Students leave buildings surrounding Watts Hall as police respond to reports of a shooting on campus at Ohio State University, Monday, Nov. 28, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)
Students leave buildings surrounding Watts Hall as police respond to reports of a shooting on campus at Ohio State University, Monday, Nov. 28, 2016, in Columbus, Ohio. (AP Photo/John Minchillo)

Police confirm the suspect who drove a car into a crowd of people and began attacking them with a butcher knife on the campus of The Ohio State University is dead.

OSU president Michael Drake says the sole suspect drove a car into a group of people, got out and began to cut them with a butcher knife. A police officer arrived within a minute of the attack and shot and killed the attacker.

A police officer was on the scene within a minute and killed the assailant. “He engaged the suspect and eliminated the threat,” OSU Police Chief Craig Stone said.

The Associated Press reports that the attacker has been identified as Abdul Razak Ali Artan. He was born in Somalia and living in the United States as a legal permanent resident. It was unclear when Artan came to the U.S.

“This was done on purpose,” Stone said.

Ohio State University Police identified the responding officer as Officer Alan Horujko.

Officials said 11 people were transported to local hospitals, and all nine victims have non-life-threatening injuries. The patients were split among OSU Wexner Medical Center, OhioHealth Grant Medical Center and OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital.

Victims were hospitalized with injuries including stab wounds, injury by motor vehicle and other injuries that are being evaluated.

Campus remains open during the continued investigation, although classes have been canceled for the remainder of the day.

A following alert told students to “continue to shelter in place. Wait for Police officers directions. Please contact Police / 9-1-1 only if you have information.”

The shelter in place was lifted just after 11:30am after police secured the scene.

The Ohio State University issued the following statement just after 12:20 p.m.:

The university will continue to share information through Buckeye Alert and emergency.osu.edu. Our top priority remains the safety and security of our campus community. Our thoughts and prayers are with those injured and their families.

Heavily armed police, ambulances and SWAT vehicles could be seen on the Columbus campus. The FBI, Ohio State police and Columbus police were assisting university police.

The Ohio State Wexner Medical Center issued the following statement just after 11 a.m. Monday morning.

Our priority is to ensure the health and safety of our patients, visitors and employees. At this time, we are taking the appropriate steps, including collaborating with local authorities, to understand what has occurred and to manage the situation. At this time, we are treating four victims at OSU Wexner Medical Center, none with life-threatening injuries. As we gather information, we’ll post updates on our Intranet, website and online media room. For patients at OSU Wexner Medical Center, normal operations and appointments will continue as scheduled.

Sophomore Wyatt Crosher said he heard what he thought was gunfire coming from a class building.

“My roommate and I heard about three or four gunshots from across the street, and soon after we heard a bunch of police and ambulances pull up across the street,” the 19-year-old said.

“I was going to class and just all the people were running and I was really nervous I was like oh crap,” said 5th year senior Scott Bedle. “I saw people running cop sirens everything.”

“I heard like multiple gunshots, and I wasn’t sure if it was real or not but as soon as I looked out the window and I saw the same,” said senior Yoon Lee.

“It’s really scary,” said Rachel Lemaster. “We barricaded ourselves in our rooms like we were taught turn off all lights and just hunker down but Kevin is looking out the window seeing what was going on.”

One student told NBC News she was walking down the street when she saw a car plow into a crowd of people who had evacuated an academic building during a fire alarm.

“This car just swerved and ran into a whole group of people,” said Nicole Kreinbrink. “It hit a cop really bad.”

Other students barricaded themselves in classrooms.

“I’m safe in a barricaded room,” Harrison Roth tweeted. “If you’re on campus, get in a room and stay safe.”
President-Elect Donald Trump issued a statement following the attack:

Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther offered his thoughts and prayers to the victims and students on Twitter. He also released the following statement:

“As the situation at the Ohio State University unfolds, we lift up the victims and the first responders in our thoughts and prayers. We ask for students and university employees to continue to follow instructions of Ohio State authorities.”

Columbus City Council President Zach Klein also released the following statement regarding the situation on campus:

“Columbus City Council stands united with The Ohio State University. We are continually thinking about and praying for all those involved and affected by this senseless act of violence. City Council stands ready to do its part to support the University, all law enforcement agencies involved, and the entire OSU community.”

Ohio Governor John Kasich weighed in on Twitter saying, “Ohio’s thoughts and prayers go out to the Ohio State community. Be safe, listen to first responders.” He latest released a longer statement reading:

My thoughts are with the victims of this attack right now and I pray for their safety and recovery.  I am grateful for the professional, coordinated response from first responders whose efforts helped effectively contain this incident before further harm could be done.  I have been staying in contact with Ohio first responders since the incident began and have spoken with Ohio State’s President Dr. Michael Drake to pledge whatever additional help the university needs.”

Others to issue statements included Cleveland Cavaliers player Lebron James, who was on campus this past Saturday, and the University of Michigan Athletics department.

Facebook activated its safety check feature following news of the campus shooting.

Lutheran Campus Ministries announced they will hold a public prayer service for OSU victims tonight near campus. The event will be helped on 45 E 13th Ave at 4:00 p.m.

Just one year ago, the university posted this training video on YouTube to try and get more people to form a plan for survival in the event of an active shooter situation.

“Three simple words could save lives so remember run, hide, fight,” Ohio State University Police Training Coordinator Adam Tabor said in the video.

Ohio State University’s main campus in Columbus is one of the largest in the United States. The university has more than 65,000 students enrolled across the state.

Students had just returned to campus Monday to get ready for final exams, which begin on Dec. 9.

Watts Hall is the Material Science and Engineering building for campus.