UD Reacts To Oregon District Mass Shooting

Sean Newhouse 
Online Editor

A gunman killed nine people and injured 27 just after 1 a.m. Sunday morning in the city of Dayton’s Oregon District, which is nearly two miles from the University of Dayton campus.

The alleged gunman was shot by Dayton police less than 60 seconds after he opened fire on a crowd near Ned Peppers Bar.

The victims are: Lois Oglesby, Megan Betts, Nicholas Cumer, Logan Turner, Thomas McNichols, Derrick Fudge, Monica Brickhouse, Saheed Saleh, Beatrice ‘Nicole’ Warren-Curtis.

They range in age from 22 to 57. The alleged shooter’s sister – Megan, a 22-year-old student at Wright State University studying environmental science – was among the victims.

According to two emails from UD President Eric Spina sent to students on Sunday, there is no information that any member of UD’s community was killed or injured in the incident.

Most of the 27 who were injured have been released from the hospital, according to the Dayton Daily News.

There was nothing in the alleged shooter’s background that would have prohibited him from legally purchasing a firearm, according to Dayton police. The weapon used was ordered online from Texas and was “transferred to the suspect at a local firearms dealer.”

The 24-year-old alleged shooter – who was from Bellbrook, a Dayton suburb – was suspended in high school for writing a hit list of people who he wanted to kill on a bathroom wall.

Police said the alleged shooter went to the Oregon District on Saturday night with his sister and a male companion, who was injured in the shooting. The alleged gunman left his sister, and investigators are trying to determine the alleged gunman’s whereabouts after they separated.

Senior communication major Claire Strobach was at Toxic Brew Company, which is next to Ned Peppers Bar, during the shooting. She was in a bathroom when it started, separated from her friends and sister.

“I never heard the shots…I came outside, and everyone was running, and I asked what was happening,” Strobach said. “I just heard someone say ‘there’s a shooter,’ and so I followed the crowd to the attic of the bar….”

Strobach was able to reunite with her friends and went to her sister’s apartment, where they had begun their evening hours earlier with an “apartment-warming party” to celebrate her sister’s return to Dayton.

“I’m still in some disbelief that this even happened or could have happened to me,” she said. “I think there’s always going to be a little fear in me whenever I go somewhere.”

This comes after a shooting on Saturday in El Paso, Texas where at least 20 people were killed and more than two dozen injured in what federal authorities are treating as an act of domestic terrorism. The alleged gunman is believed to have posted a message before the mass shooting in the city along the U.S.-Mexico border that claims the U.S. is being overrun by Hispanic immigrants.

In two statements, President Spina expressed grief about the mass shooting and urged elected leaders to address gun violence. He also thanked UD police officers who responded to the shooting in the Oregon District.

Counselors are available for students and can be reached by calling Public Safety (937-229-2121).

A prayer service was held in the Chapel of the Immaculate Conception Monday afternoon. At the ceremony, the names of the victims from the El Paso and Dayton mass shootings were read along with the names of other victims of gun violence in the U.S.

Photo taken by Griffin Quinn

After each name was said, attendees responded with “presente,” which in the Latin American Catholic tradition means: “You are here with us. You are not forgotten.”

There was a vigil in remembrance of the shooting victims on Sunday night in the Oregon District. While Ohio Governor Mike DeWine (R) was speaking, attendees chanted “Do something!”

Photo taken by Ruthey Schultz

During a press conference, Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley (’98) asked in reference to gun violence “…I just question when is enough, enough?”

President Donald Trump ordered flags to be lowered to half-staff in honor of victims of the mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton.

 The Dayton Foundation, a community nonprofit, is raising funds to assist victims of the shooting. You can donate here.

This summer Dayton also has been the site of a KKK-affiliated rally and was affected by Memorial Day tornadoes that left one dead and more than 100 injured.

Griffin Quinn contributed to this report.

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