ALLENDALE TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — It was a scary morning for those who live in Canvas Townhomes, a student housing complex near Grand Valley State University, as they were celebrating family weekend.
“We turned the lights off. Locked the doors,” Brendan Butterfield said.
Four people were injured in a shooting that happened outside of one of the apartment buildings early Sunday morning.
The sounds of gunfire happened just outside where roommates Brendan Butterfield and Joe Ernest have been living for four weeks.
“We were inside and Noah here was playing ‘Zombies’ and we thought at first it was his game,” Butterfield said.
“Yeah, I came upstairs to get a juice box and was walking by the door and I just heard … six or seven shots. I wasn’t counting. After that I ran over there to tell them to quiet the game down and then we stayed there for a minute and we heard some more,” Ernest added.
The residents, who are mostly GVSU students, say there were multiple parties happening Saturday night into Sunday morning. According to residents and visitors of the complex, there were about 50 to 60 people who had gathered for the party where the shooting took place.
“A fight happened prior to the shooting and that had the cops show up. (Local security) was there for that as well. … An hour or so later, another fight broke out which escalated into a shooting,” Ernest said.
Two of the people that were shot were GVSU students.
Bullet holes could be seen outside one of the townhomes on Sunday afternoon. Several cars were also damaged.
“It’s disheartening. It’s not a good sign to start off with. We’ll see how the rest of the year goes,” Ernest said. “We’re iffy on whether or not we will come back next year.”
“There’s parties everywhere. It’s a college town. It has to be more controlled,” Nick Stakov said.
Tyler Lamos, a former resident of Canvas Townhomes who was on site during the shooting, added, “They’re doing nothing about it and I don’t really get that.”
GVSU Department of Public Safety issued a statement this afternoon in part:
“This latest incident is added to the increased level of violence, some involving weapons, that we are seeing near our campuses and within cities around the country. No area is immune from crime, and it is my duty as the director of public safety to inform members of our community of these events, so they can exercise caution and good judgment in the hopes of avoiding being involved in acts of violence.GVSU Department of Public Safety
“The university is working with the Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office, the City of Grand Rapids and other law enforcement agencies to curtail the violence and protect our community. We are also working with the owners and managers of the off-campus apartments that surround our Allendale Campus. We meet regularly and this issue is at the top of our agenda.”