University of Maryland Shocked by Halloween Off-Campus Shooting
The Hotel, an off-campus location near the University of Maryland (UMD) at College Park, was hit by a shooting that injured seven people late Saturday night.
Police report that none of the injured received life-threatening injuries and five have been released from the hospital. All shooting victims are adults and do not attend the university. The motive for the shooting remains under investigation and police have released photos of two people of interest.
A Halloween Horror Story
Around 11 pm Saturday, police responded to a shooting in one of the hotel rooms at The Hotel in the 7700 block of Baltimore Avenue. Angela Roberts, a senior at UMD, covered the incident for the Baltimore Sun.
Several people were in the area at the time for Halloween festivities. Emily Garrett and Avery Strobel, students at UMD, were near the scene of the shooting after it occurred as they left their off-campus house to attend a Halloween party.
“It’s scary to think about. That’s a lot of people,” general studies major Strobel told the Baltimore Sun.
The students were part of a crowd of students and families in the area on late Saturday night and early Sunday morning, some even stopping to dine at The Hotel. By Sunday afternoon, There was no police presence nor evidence that a shooting had occurred.
Violence in Uncertain Times
Darryll Pines, president of UMD, published an article on the school website addressing the issue.
“This violent crime comes at a time when we are constantly advocating for and prioritizing safety — during COVID-19, amidst a polarized election, and in our everyday lives,” he wrote.
Pines reassured the community that local authorities are currently investigating the crime, urging the UMD community to come together for support.
Please be assured that our commitment to safety is unwavering, and we have been working closely with @PGPDNews, @UMPD, The Hotel staff, and community partners to understand last night’s incident and promote safety in our community. https://t.co/gGbIeLT1Fd
— Dr. Darryll J. Pines (@President_Pines) November 2, 2020
College Park Mayor Patrick Wojahn called the shooting “distressing” while expressing his concern for those injured. “I just hope that everyone pulls out OK,” he said.
The university’s police department indicates that since 2010, UMD has only had one homicide, in 2017. Investigations by local authorities, with the help of hotel staff and community partners, are ongoing.