A female student was shot three times during a robbery attempt near the campus of Tennessee State University Wednesday night.
The incident occurred at the intersection of 31st Avenue North and John A. Merritt Boulevard around 9:30 p.m.
The victim, a freshman at the university, was approached by an unknown male in a car while walking back to campus.
The man then got out of his vehicle and attempted to take the victim’s backpack. A struggle ensued and the female student was shot in shoulder, thigh and abdomen.
A second woman, also a freshman at the school, was grazed by a bullet. Both were transported to Vanderbilt University Medical Center. TSU President Dr. Glenda Glover said the students were alert and talking. They are expected to be fine.
“It’s shocking,” said James Shelton, a senior at TSU who witnessed the shooting. “It’s something I won’t forget anytime soon.”
Shelton was driving down John A. Merritt when it happened.
“I hear ‘pop, pop’ so I look up I look to the left and I see a man with a hoodie on,” said Shelton. “He had a handgun. Then I see two more flashes of light from the gun.”
He told News 2 he sped off and ducked down before calling 911.
“It’s not something I ever want to see again, specifically on my campus,” said Shelton.
Metro police have joined TSU police in their investigation.
Students News 2 spoke with said they are pleased with the school’s immediate response regarding the shootings.
“Administration has been doing a very good job of telling us what they’re doing, what we need to do in response to it, and how to keep the campus at a very peaceful level,” said Lauren Thomas, a TSU senior.
The gunman in Wednesday night’s shooting remains at large.
He is said to be a light-skinned black male, around 18 or 19 years old with shoulder length dreadlocks and a slight mustache. He is around 5 feet, 5 inches tall and weighs around 135 pounds.
He was last seen wearing a Versace-type pullover shirt with black leather sleeves, black leather pants, a skull cap and black, white and red tennis shoes.
He fled the scene in a black or dark-colored vehicle with at least one accomplice.
The students told police they did not recognize the suspects who attacked them as fellow students.