18 May
2021

Former UNC Charlotte student Trystan Terrell charged with murder after opening fire on classroom

first_imgCharlotte Mecklenburg Police Department(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) — Two people were killed and another four injured after a gunman opened fire in a classroom on the campus at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte on Tuesday, the school’s last day of classes.Police identified the suspect as 22-year-old Trystan Andrew Terrell. He has been charged with two counts of murder, four counts of attempted murder, four counts of assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill, possession of a firearm on educational property and discharging a firearm on educational property.Those killed were Ellis Parlier, 19, and Riley Howell, 21.“Riley was truly a one of a kind guy,” his family said in a statement. “He loved all things outdoors, adventure and especially family. He loved to work outside and when he worked, he did it with his hands and his heart. He always was able to put others before himself and never hesitated to help anyone who needed it. He was friends with anyone and everyone–a big, muscular guy with a huge heart.”“He was the kind of person who you knew would take care of you the moment you met him, and he always did,” his family said. “He radiated love and always will.”The injured are Drew Pescaro, 19; Sean Dehart, 20; Emily Houpt, 23; and Rami Alramadhan, 20.All are expected to make a full recovery.“This is the worst day in the history of UNC Charlotte,” School Chancellor Philip L. Dubois said Tuesday night.“My only concern is with these families and these students,” the chancellor told ABC News. “These kids are 19, 20, the oldest was 23. I have three children all older than that and I can’t imagine being in the position of these parents. I just can’t imagine.” Dubois told reporters that the suspected shooter, Terrell, was a student at the school but withdrew earlier in the semester.Paul Rold, Terrell’s grandfather, told The Associated Press that his grandson moved to North Carolina with his father after his mother died two years ago.“You’re describing someone foreign to me. This is not in his DNA,” he said.Terrell will make his first court appearance Thursday afternoon. There is no reason to believe anyone else was involved, officials said. Police dispatch received calls around 4:40 p.m. reporting a suspect was armed with a pistol and had shot several students, police said.Student Tristan Field, who was in the classroom when the shooting happened, told ABC News the class was listening to group presentations when the gunfire erupted. He was startled and looked in the direction of the gunshots when he heard people screaming and saw them running toward the door on his side of the room.Jack Seigel, a sophomore in that class, said he “heard shots” and “everyone started sprinting.”“I fell in the doorway and got trampled along with some other people but I was able to pick myself up and get out,” he told ABC News. “The people on the other side of the room were not so lucky.”Officers responded to the scene and were able to get into the building where the suspect was located, disarmed him and took him into custody, officials said. The suspect did not say anything to the officers as he was arrested.“Our officers actions definitely saved lives. There’s no doubt about that,” said University of North Carolina at Charlotte Police and Public Safety Chief Jeff Baker. The school was placed on lockdown as officers secured the campus. Students were later allowed to return to their residence halls on campus, police said.“The first thing that went to my head was, ‘Yeah this is actually happening, but just don’t sit there, like get up and go,’” said student Jordan Pearce, who was just outside the classroom when the shooting began. “So I grabbed a girl and we just went straight for the bathroom and called our parents after that.”“For many people here, this will be the worst day of their lives,” North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper said. “This is a tough day, but the university will get through it.”Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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