BALTIMORE, Md. - Morgan State University has decided to cancel all classes and a majority of its homecoming activities this week after four students and another individual were shot on campus Tuesday night.
With the shooter still on the loose, certain events, such as the homecoming football game, and the gala are being postponed.
President David K. Wilson sent a letter to the school community Wednesday afternoon informing them of the decision.
Morgan State University drum major Justin Fabiyi-King leads the MSU marching band in a pre-game performance on the football field. Sept. 4, 2021
Wilson said that he spoke to members of the school's student government, the university council and his administration before he made the choice to "regrettably" nix all the events planned around homecoming. He said it's the first time in Morgan's history this has happened.
"Today, we unfortunately find ourselves navigating this tragic event during a time at which we should be celebrating our National Treasure during Homecoming," Wilson's letter reads. "Please understand that the safety of our campus is of the utmost importance and our resolve in ensuring that we have a secure campus is paramount. In response to last evening’s events, we are aggressively increasing security measures on campus, further amplifying additional security measures that have been implemented in recent years."
Instead of the homecoming pep rally, the concert, and the parade, campus-wide programming geared toward health and welfare will be offered to students traumatized by the events that occurred following the Mr. and Misses Morgan State coronation ceremony.
"We strongly believe that this moment calls for reflection, thus allowing our students, faculty and staff the opportunity to focus on their mental wellness," Wilson said.
Earlier in the day, Wilson released a statement thanking Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott, as well as Baltimore Police Commissioner Richard Worley for arriving at the campus quickly.
Authorities continue to search for suspects after five people, between the ages of 18 and 22, were wounded by gunfire. During a press conference, Police Commissioner Worley identified the victims as four men and one woman. Worley also stated their injuries were not considered life-threatening.
The full statement from President Wilson + his homecoming announcement can be viewed below:
"Dear Morgan Community,
On Tuesday night, shortly after I left Murphy Fine Arts Center where I had attended the coronation of Mr. & Ms. Morgan State University (MSU), I received word from the MSU Police Department that shots had been fired on campus within the vicinity of the Murphy Fine Arts Center and Thurgood Marshall Hall. As I arrived on the scene, I received a call from Governor Wes Moore pledging state support to assist in the investigation. I also received a call from Mayor Brandon Scott informing me that he was en route to campus.
I thank Mayor Scott, and Baltimore City Police Commissioner Richard Worley, for quickly arriving on the scene and working very closely with MSU Police Chief Lance Hatcher, and our MSU Police Department, to secure the safety of the campus. The University issued several shelter-in-place alerts throughout the evening, via our MSU alert system and our University mobile app, before the campus was eventually cleared after midnight.
Multiple individuals were injured in the shooting and were transported to local hospitals. Preliminary reports are that the injuries they received are non-life-threatening.
As a result of what transpired last night classes have been cancelled today. Additionally, I am convening a meeting with my Executive Cabinet this morning to rethink the rest of Homecoming activities this week and will inform the university community of our decision later this afternoon.
Our prayers are with our students who suffered injuries, and their loved ones. For those students in need of assistance, our dedicated staff from the Division of Student Affairs and the University Counseling Center are available to provide support. Counseling and support services are available by calling 800-422-0009 or 443-885-3130. In addition, for 24-hour counseling support, students can visit UWill Counseling Services online.
What happened on our campus was such a senseless act of violence perpetrated on our community. It was so disappointing to learn of what took place especially after what was a family-filled and fun evening of celebrating the pageantry and beauty of our students. But rest assured, our Morgan family is strong and we will march on with determination to keep moving on.
"Fair Morgan, we love thee, so tried and so true, Our hearts at thy name thrill with pride; We owe thee allegiance, we pledge thee our faith, A faith which shall ever abide."
Sincerely, President David K. Wilson."