IACLEA President Raymond H. Thrower, Jr., Comments on Fatal Shootings at Northern Illinois Universit

HARTFORD, Conn. – The president of the International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators (IACLEA) Raymond H. Thrower, Jr., made the following statement regarding the Feb. 14 shooting at Northern Illinois University:

Our thoughts and deepest condolences go out to the families of the victims of Thursday’s (Feb. 14) senseless shootings at Northern Illinois University in DeKalb, Illinois. This is truly a tragedy for the families of the victims and the Northern Illinois University community. The shootings underscore the complex challenges campus public safety professionals face in protecting the lives and property at colleges and universities. Fatal shootings are rare on college campuses, but we must remember each one and take what lessons we can learn from them to prevent future tragedies from occurring.

According to news reports, six students were killed and 15 injured when a gunman who was not a current student at the university entered a classroom auditorium shortly before 3 p.m., central time and opened fire. The gunman then killed himself. Police have established no motive for the killings.

IACLEA (International Association of Campus Law Enforcement Administrators) has offered its support to the Northern Illinois University Department of Public Safety. The department responded with officers at the scene within minutes of receiving a 911 call from the auditorium and university officials issued a timely warning to the campus community.

Thursday’s shootings were the second incident of fatal campus shootings within a week. On Feb. 8, a female student shot and killed two other students and herself inside a classroom at Louisiana Technical College in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Last year, IACLEA assembled a Task Force to review various campus safety reports from governmental and nongovernmental study panels convened following the mass shootings at Virginia Tech on April 16, 2007. That Task Force is expected to report its findings and recommendations to the IACLEA Board of Directors in March.

IACLEA will continue its efforts to work with campus safety stakeholders from federal agencies and other organizations on initiatives to make our college and university campuses safer. It is our highest priority.


IACLEA Feb. 15, 2008 press release

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