Victims recovering after double shooting at Virginia campus

Reuters News
Posted: Apr 12, 2013 3:36 PM
Victims recovering after double shooting at Virginia campus

(Reuters) - Two women were in stable condition on Saturday after being shot and wounded a day earlier by a community college student who opened fire at his school's satellite campus inside a southwestern Virginia mall, police said.

One of the injured women was a part-time employee of New River Community College and the other has been identified as a student there, according to the Christiansburg Police Department.

Both remained hospitalized in Roanoke and were not being named to protect their privacy, police said.

Authorities were investigating what prompted the suspected gunman, Neil Allen MacInnis, 18, to drive to the shopping center on Friday and shoot the two women at the mall-based campus.

The attack sparked pandemonium inside the New River Valley Mall in Christiansburg, a town on the fringe of the Blue Ridge Mountains about 30 miles southwest of Roanoke.

An eyewitness told Roanoke television station WSL Channel 10 that he saw the suspect pointing what appeared to be a shotgun at one woman in a lobby of the college adjacent to the mall, and heard her cry, "No, no, please."

Police said MacInnis, who was enrolled in New River Community College and completed a Christiansburg Police Department citizen academy program last year, was quickly subdued by an off-duty security guard and two police officers.

Investigators believe the gunman acted alone, Christiansburg Police Chief Mark Sisson said at a news conference, although he added that no motive had been established.

He said investigators were trying to determine whether any relationship existed between the suspected gunman and the two women.

MacInnis was charged with two counts of malicious wounding and two counts of using a firearm in the commission of a felony, the chief said.

(Reporting by Colleen Jenkins; Editing by Alex Dobuzinskis and Vicki Allen)