A longtime sociology professor at the College of Southern Nevada (CSN) is facing felony charges after shooting himself on Aug. 28, the second day of the school year, The Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.
The professor, Mark Bird, took his .22 pistol into a restroom on campus. He taped a $100 bill and a note that said ,"For the janitor," onto one of the mirrors.
Bird stumbled out of the bathroom, bleeding, before he collapsed. Multiple faculty and at least one student witnessed the encounter before a 911 call was made.
When police arrived at the scene the .22 and a spent shell casing were found on the bathroom floor.
Witnesses told police they heard a loud noise come from the bathroom but they had no idea Bird was armed or had shot himself, police reports indicate.
"One college employee told police that he held Bird’s hand to calm him down as others tried to stop the bleeding. While waiting for authorities to arrive, Bird said he had shot himself in protest of President Donald Trump, police noted in their report. The report did not elaborate," The Review-Journal reported.
Around 9 a.m. that morning a campus-wide text alert was sent to students and faculty letting them know the scene was clear and the firearm had been recovered.
The CSN blog, "The Chronicle," briefly mentioned the incident although no details were provided:
We have received several inquiries surrounding the shooting incident on the Charleston Campus last week. I want to let everyone know that the CSN Police Department has concluded its investigation. An emeritus professor was treated for a self-inflicted injury in the hospital and subsequently arrested and charged with possessing a weapon on campus and other charges. I appreciate all of the expressions of concern and interest, and I pledge to keep everyone updated should the situation change. Please know that if your department would like an individual safety review with the CSN Police Department, you may email Chief Darryl Caraballo at email@example.com.
According to Robert Manis, president of the college’s faculty union, Nevada Faculty Alliance, CSN did not provide students with very many details, which has resulted in numerous rumors spreading across campus.
“They never really told the students much about it except that it was resolved on the actual day of the shooting,” Manis told The Review-Journal. “When you don’t give the full details, then rumors go crazy. It’s unfortunate because it made the students and faculty very afraid and allowed rumors to proliferate.”
Court records show Bird was charged last month with discharging a gun within a prohibited structure, carrying a concealed weapon without a permit and possessing a dangerous weapon on school property.