MOUNT PLEASANT, Mich. (WOOD) — Students and parents on Central Michigan University’s campus were escorted to a local hotel to wait out a lockdown caused by a double-murder in a residence hall Friday morning.
As students were reunited with their parents at the Comfort Inn on the south side of Mount Pleasant, they provided perspective on what it was like on the usually busy 23,000 student campus while it was on lockdown status.
“It’s just crazy,” said Keara Borum, a sophomore from Detroit. “I have no other words, except that it’s crazy.”
Parents had another point of view, especially those who were hours away when they got the call from their frightened sons and daughters.
“I was on the phone with her when I was leaving the house and she told me and I thought maybe it’s somebody was playing a joke with firecrackers. Then I realized it was gunshots and I could not get up here quick enough,” said Borum’s mother, Venita Weekes.
The lockdown started when James Davis Sr. and Diva Davis were shot and killed on the fourth floor of Campbell Hall Friday morning. Police have identified their son, James Eric Davis, Jr., as a suspect and have been searching for him since the incident.
School officials continued updating students hunkered down in their rooms throughout the ordeal.
While the shooting appears to be tied to problems between an apparently troubled student and his parents, the memory of the shooting at Parkland High in Florida just over two weeks ago as well as other mass killings on both college and high school campuses was not far from the minds of CMU students.
Many said they never thought they’d be part of a lockdown.
“No, but who ever does? I’m just glad that they handled the situation the way they did, because of how many things that have happened around, I’m sure that they were really prepared,” said Lansing Junior Diego Martin.
As the lockdown continued, police were able to let some students the residence halls known as the Towers leave campus, where Campbell Hall is located.
With the start of spring break, students will have a week to decompress before its back to campus. Some say it may be tough to return.
“I think it will,” said Borum. “I have really bad anxiety so I feel like now coming back after break, I’m going to be so scared to like be walking to class once the sun sets. I have to deal with that. But I should be OK.”