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VCU sends alerts after shooting outside Richmond dorm

Posted at 12:46 PM, Mar 25, 2019
and last updated 2019-03-25 12:48:26-04

RICHMOND, Va. -- Richmond and VCU Police are investigating a drive-by shooting reported just feet from student housing on Virginia Commonwealth University's Monroe Park campus.  Police responded to the corner of West Cary Street and North Laurel Street at about 12:40 a.m. on Monday.

University of Virginia student Joonas Castren was visiting his girlfriend when shots were fired.

"We heard a succession of really rapid bangs," Castren said. "Some of my friends who were on the second floor who were a bit closer to the actions. They saw a friend of the victim walking around the scene very distressed."

VCU Police sent out an emergency alert, notifying students that a shooting had occurred and asked them to stay inside while they investigated. A male victim who, according to VCU is not a student, was found shot with non-life threatening injuries.

Witnesses reported seeing someone in a four-door black sedan shoot the victim.

Some students, who spoke with CBS 6, said the shooting was a reminder of how important it was to be aware of their surroundings.

"Coming to Richmond, you have to know that there’s violence here," one student said.

"You don’t have to be paranoid of what’s going on around you. Just kinda have your head up be aware of what’s going on around you. So that you can react to certain situations a lot faster than if you had your head phones in and you had your head down," Castren added.

"I’m glad VCU’s doing their part," VCU student Oriella Mejia added. "It definitely does make me feel safe. I just hope that the civilians and the people that do acts like this will stop and you know realize the humanity."