UMass Amherst students react to armed suspect search on campus
AMHERST, Mass. (WGGB/WSHM) - Police have located a suspect following a search for a possibly armed person at UMass Amherst Monday afternoon.
Police told Western Mass News that there is no longer any risk to the community.
Students on campus told us that they felt safe and are commending the police for doing a good job handling this situation.
“My girlfriend was coming to see me, so she texted me to be careful,” said UMass senior Ayush Chaudhary.
It was a chaotic afternoon on UMass Amherst’s campus as police searched for and located an individual who they said was the focus of an alert Monday afternoon.
The alert originally came in around 2:30 p.m. as a report of a person with a rifle after a picture was captured of the suspect sitting on a swing in a field behind the Renaissance Center on East Pleasant Street.
One student who lives in the Sylvan residential area told us he was studying in a different building at the time.
“It was different because this time, we got a picture,” UMass junior Evan Bogan told us, “so, you know, you could see him, see what he had, and it seemed like a rifle shotgun.”
Police searched extensively in the wooded area north of Sylvan for the suspect and eventually located the person just before 5:30 p.m. They said they recovered a pellet gun, and appropriate action is being assessed.
Students told Western Mass News that this is a rare occurrence and they feel safe.
“The UMass Police Department, they know what they’re doing,” Bogan said. “They’ve always done a pretty good job. I generally felt safe. Bit odd, but yeah.”
“I’m glad they found him, but I wasn’t too worried,” Chaudhary added.
He said that his professor was very understanding about the incident.
“He didn’t make it [class] mandatory as soon as the announcement came out,” Chaudhary said.
UMass officials encourage students and staff to make use of campus counseling services if they are in need of support.
There has been no word on who this individual is or what they were doing.
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