A student was shot to death after running pedestrians over with his car and stabbing them with a butcher knife on Ohio State’s campus Monday, Nov. 28.
Eleven students were injured in the attacks, one critically with a fractured skull. Officials say they are all expected to live, according to the Associated Press.
The FBI has joined in on the investigation of the attack because it has possible terrorist connections. They have raised concerns over extremists encouraging simpler attacks. Extremists want their sympathizers to use whatever weapons are available to them, such as using cars and knives, which is easier than a bombing.
Abdul Razak Ali Artan has been identified as the attacker. He was born in Somalia but was a legal resident of the United States.
Surveillance videos show Artan was in the car by himself, but officials are looking into possible partners.
Artan was shot to death by a campus police officer. The gunshots sent an active-shooter alert around the campus, and it was not lifted for another hour and a half.
“There were several moments of chaos,” said Ohio State engineering student Rachel LeMaster to AP. “We barricaded ourselves like we’re supposed to since it was right outside our door and just hunkered down.”
The university’s emergency management department tweeted around 10 a.m. and said, “Buckeye Alert: Active Shooter on campus. Run Hide Fight. Watts Hall. 19th and College.”
Run Hide Fight is standard protocol for active-shooter situations. It means escape if it is safe and possible, hide if it is not safe, or fight if the attacker is directly threatening your life.
Students barricaded themselves in offices and classrooms while the alert was active. Classes were canceled for the rest of the day.
“I thought it was an accident initially until I saw the guy come out with a knife,” said Martin Schneider, a student at Ohio State, to AP. He heard a car revving and said Artan didn’t say anything when he got out of his car.
The Lantern, the student newspaper of Ohio State, interviewed Artan prior to the attacks.
“I was kind of scared with everything going on in the media. I’m a Muslim; it’s not what media portrays me to be,” he said during the interview. “If people look at me, a Muslim praying, I don’t know what they’re going to think, what’s going to happen. But I don’t blame them. It’s the media that put that picture in their heads.”
Artan was considered friendly by his neighbors, according to AP. He attened daily prayer services at a local mosque.
He was a third-year logistics management student who transfered to Ohio State from Columbus State in the fall.
Muslim mosque and organization leaders in the area condemned the attack. They also asked people to not rush to blame a religion or ethnicity because of the attacks.
The attack occurred after students returned to campus after Thanksgiving break.
Ohio State is home to 60,000 students and is the country’s third-largest public university.
Madeline Purdue can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @madelinepurdue.