MIDWEST CITY, Okla. (KFOR) – Rose State College students, faculty and staff are holding their families extra tight Monday after the campus was sent into a lock down on reports of an active shooter earlier in the day.
Just before 1 p.m., students received an alert stating, “ROSE ALERT: We are currently experiencing an active shooter situation on campus. Please shelter in place and follow instructions from law enforcement. More information to follow as it becomes available.”
Midwest City Police (MCPD) told KFOR there was one male shooter and one male victim.
MCPD also confirmed the shooting happened in the breezeway next to the Humanities Building.
David Heller, a student at Rose State College, said he was in the Student Services Building which is to the right of the Humanities Building when he heard about the situation.
“As soon as I got word that there was an active shooter and they were yelling, you know, ‘Go, go, go, go, go, go to the back.’ I just ran to the back, you know, not knowing what was going to happen,” said Heller.
His initial thought when getting the notification on his phone and being ushered to a hiding place was, “Here we go again.”
Heller recalled taking shelter in a nearby bathroom with other students, faculty members, and guest speakers who were on campus for the day.
He said he wasn’t afraid because he kept reassuring himself law enforcement and college faculty would keep him safe.
While Heller told KFOR the mood was “calm” in the bathroom he hid in, other students say they had quite the opposite experience.
“Whenever we were all hunkered down in a room and stuff, there was a lot of panic on some people’s faces and stuff. And like one girl was crying, like genuinely she was crying in there,” said Rose State College student, Daniel Bowman.
Bowman claims a friend of his witnessed the shooter firing his gun, adding the friend said the gun appeared to be a pistol.
Although Bowman didn’t see the shooter, he recalled hearing multiple gunshots.
Bowman tried to ease those he was hiding with by telling jokes and comforting them, saying he felt calm in the moment.
On the other hand, his mom, Diana Sheely said she was in shambles not knowing where her son was or if he was okay.
“I was about to pass out when I came up [here] because I was like, ‘Where is he at?’ And I really didn’t know what to do,” said Sheely.
Sheely told KFOR she wasn’t aware of an active shooter until news reports started rolling in.
She immediately rushed over to the campus, praying for good news.
“I just kind of panicked and everybody started calling me [and] my family. My mom was like, ‘Have you heard from him?’ I have like over maybe 20 calls in there and I knew not to call him while that was going on, so I was texting him just in case he was in danger and I didn’t get a text back or a call back. I knew that it was, you know, something going on at that moment,” stated Sheely.
She waited on the curb for about 10 minutes before her son walked out unharmed.
He appeared to be one of the last students to walk out of the building.
As Bowman walked out, Sheely cried out, “Daniel! Daniel!”
The two embraced each other with a big hug.
“I’m so sorry. I was so worried,” Sheely cried out as she hugged Bowman.
Bowman said he wasn’t sure if it was safe to leave the building yet, but once he saw live news coverage of the incident, he knew he had to make a run for it.
“I’m just grateful to God for the newscasters because we wouldn’t even, I wouldn’t even have found out about it. My family wouldn’t have found out about it either,” explained Sheely. “I’m spent. This is a lot of trauma.”
Both Bowman and Sheely said they’re praying for those involved in Monday afternoon’s shooting.
MCPD told KFOR the male victim has died.
Officials are calling the incident “domestic-related.”
Oklahoma Highway Patrol Trooper Eric Foster said the suspect was taken down within minutes of law enforcement’s arrival.
“Teams of troopers came, and with other law enforcement, we began to systematically search the campus to make sure to give confidence to everyone that it was safe,” said Trooper Foster. “When something like this occurs, we’re coming just like this. Every time we’re coming heavy, we’re coming very loud. We’re bringing all the personnel that we can and it’s not really, you know, a tax on the resources because that’s what we think is important to do.”
OHP got involved once several notifications came through from other agencies, social media, and concerned citizens.
The suspect was arrested and is now in jail.
MCPD is the lead agency on Monday’s deadly shooting.
The agency expects to have more information Monday night.
In a statement from Rose State College: “We want to thank the Midwest City Police Department and other first responders for their quick and professional response during today’s incident on campus. All classes at Rose State College have been canceled for the remainder of the day (Monday, April 24), as well as tomorrow (Tuesday, April 25). Our top priority at this time is the well-being of our students, faculty and staff. We understand that this event has been deeply distressing for our community, and we are currently working to coordinate counseling services for those in need. We will be alerting our students, faculty and staff as soon as these services become available.”