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Gunman Among At Least 10 Dead in Oregon Shooting

Oregon's attorney general has confirmed that a shooting at a community college campus in Oregon has left 13 people dead and 20 others wounded.

by VICE News
Oct 1 2015, 6:45pm

Photo par Ryan Kang/AP

A shooting at the campus of Umpqua Community College in the southwest Oregon city of Roseburg has left at least 10 people dead and seven others injured.

Police responded to calls of an active shooter at the college at 10:38am, Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin told reporters Thursday afternoon. Officers located the suspect, who was shot and killed after a brief exchange of gunfire.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown told reporters that the shooter was a 20-year-old male who acted alone. Authorities could not provide any further information about the suspect, including a possible motive.

Early media reports had put the death toll as high as 15, but Hanlin said he could not confirm the number of people injured or killed. Oregon Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum initially said that the attack had left 13 people dead and 20 others injured, but officials told NBC that some victims may have been counted multiple times.

Roseburg is a city of roughly 22,000 people located about 135 miles south of the Oregon capital of Salem and 180 miles south of Portland. Umpqua Community College has approximately 3,300 full-time students and 16,000 part-time students. The school's campus was put on lockdown and cleared by police officers.

A school official was reported as saying that shots rang out from the college's Snyder Hall.

Douglas County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Kathy Cross later confirmed that "there is no longer a threat" at the college.

Agents from the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) are currently at the scene in Roseburg. More agents, including a K-9 team, are en route from the agency's Eugene and Portland offices, an ATF spokesperson told VICE News. The ATF is working closely with local law enforcement.

Police have bused students and faculty from the scene to the Douglas County fairgrounds.

Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg received a total of 10 patients, according to the hospital's updates. Victims are also expected to be routed to a nearby Veterans Administration medical center and to hospitals in the Eugene/Springfield area, located roughly an hour away. Helicopters from the medical transport service Life Flight are reportedly ready to move critically injured patients from the school.

"We're trying to prepare for a half-dozen or more victims," said Jim Godbold, a spokesperson at PeaceHealth Riverbend Hospital in Springfield. He later confirmed that the hospital had received three victims with gunshot wounds: an 18-year-old female, a 34-year-old female, and a third female patient whose age is unknown.

PeaceHealth later tweeted that "an army" of doctors, nurses had since volunteered to help treat the patients.

Hanlin said that a multi-agency taskforce was current cooperating with the investigation, including the Sheriff's office, Roseburg Police, the FBI, and US Marshals Service.

Photo via Umpqua Community College Facebook page

The shooting Thursday is the latest in a series of gun-related tragedies across America. There have been at least 264 mass shootings in the US in 2015 alone, according to the Gun Violence Archive, a nonprofit that collects data on shootings.

"Today's shooting in Roseburg is a heartbreaking tragedy, and my thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families," US Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Springfield, said in a statement. "Once we know more about what happened today, I plan to work with my colleagues in Congress to find ways to prevent tragedies such as these."

At a press conference late Thursday, President Barack Obama said that mass shootings and "carnage" have become "routine" and that Americans are becoming "numb to this" phenomenon.

"It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun," he said.

"It's fair to say that anyone who does this has a sickness in their minds, regardless of what they think their motivations may be," Obama added. "But we are not the only country on earth who has people with mental illnesses or who want to do harm to other people. We are the only country on Earth who sees these mass shootings every few months."

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