VT students from Richmond area share concerns after shooting in Blacksburg Friday night
RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) - One person is dead and four are in hospitals after a shooting late Friday in Blacksburg.
Blacksburg Police were called to reports of shots being fired just before midnight at the Melody Hookah Lounge on North Main Street.
According to school officials, the victim who died in Friday night’s shooting was a student who attended Patrick Henry High School in Roanoke. One of the three who were injured is a Virginia Tech student.
Some students from the greater Richmond area talked with NBC12 about why this act of violence hits too close to home and stings in a way many of us remember all too well.
“This has been a serious situation at Tech before and it just runs through your mind across your mind. Is this going to be a mass shooting?” VT Sophomore Jamie Hughes said.
Emotions are still running high on Virginia Tech’s campus.
“People were freaking out, there were people crying and obviously with where we are, that being a sensitive topic,” VT graduate student Hampton Wimbish said.
Wimbish, also from the Richmond area, was downtown just steps away from the crime scene when he got a VT alert of shots fired.
“It was probably 15 minutes after we learned we were like, okay, this isn’t a joke,” Wimbish said.
A situation like this brings up scary, but familiar feelings for Hokies like Wimbish. Many immediately think back to the senseless act of gun violence that took 32 lives back in 2007.
“I’m sitting there thinking ‘wow, is this really something like this really happening again?’ Then with what had just happened at Bridgewater college...we were kind of like what’s going on with all this,” Wimbish said. “People are still concerned, still rattled.”
Jamie Hughes, a sophomore at Virginia Tech and Hanover County native, was also just blocks away when the shooting occurred.
“I felt safe where I was, but it was still a really scary situation and a lot of emotions were running high,” she said.
It was a long night for both Hughes and Wimbish, anxiety still lingering even after the coast was clear.
“Even like when I got home, and I felt safe, I was still wondering, am I really safe? You know, is this true is what I’m hearing true?” Hughes said.
“My roommates and I didn’t go to sleep until around like six in the morning,” Wimbish said.
Blacksburg Police have obtained six felony warrants for the suspect involved in the shooting.
24-year-old Jamel D. Flint of Roanoke is charged with Murder in the First Degree for the homicide of 18-year-old Isiah O. Robinson of Roanoke, plus four counts of Attempted Murder in the First Degree and one count of Use of a Firearm while committing or attempting to commit Murder for the remaining four victims.
Flint is still at large and is considered armed and dangerous, according to Blacksburg Police.
If you have information about Flint’s whereabouts, you are encouraged to use caution and contact your local authorities or the Blacksburg Police Department at (540) 443-1400. You can remain anonymous by calling the Blacksburg Police Tip Line at (540) 961-1819 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
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