Blogs written by students at Virginia Tech University have expressed fury at how police and university authorities dealt with the shooting there yesterday.
Yesterday morning a man shot 32 students at the Virginia campus before killing himself. A male and female student were shot at a hall of residence early in the morning. Two hours after the initial shooting the man returned and went on the rampage. It has been reported that the original shooting resulted from the man looking for his girlfriend and finding her with another student.
The Virginia Police Department received a 911 call from a dormitory on the Virginia campus at about 7.15am. On arriving they found the bodies of a male and female. This shooting was initially believed to be an isolated incident. University authorities met at 9.00am to discuss the situation and at 9.26am staff and students were told by email of the killing and warned to be alert to suspicious activity.
At 9.45am the police got another 911 call that there was a shooting at Norris Hall, an engineering block. When officers arrived at the building they found the doors locked and heard gunshots. As officers reached the second floor the gunshots stopped - the gunman had shot himself. A further email sent to staff and students warned there was a gunman on campus and they should stay inside and away from windows.
Virginia Tech website has more information here.
A student run news website is here.
The engineering department was the subject of two bomb threats over recent weeks, which some believe should have indicated more serious trouble ahead.
The National Rifle Association expressed its condolences "to the families of Virginia Tech University and everyone else affected by this horrible tragedy".
Virginia Tech was founded in 1872 as an agricultural college and is a renowned centre for science and technology. It has over 25,000 full-time students. Alumni include Nasa flight director Robert E Castle Jr, and three astronauts. ®