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In response to public records requests and other requests for more information surrounding Sunday’s shooting on campus, Columbus State University is able to release the following information:
- Several witnesses have come forward to say they saw a man running with a gun Sunday afternoon, being chased by police.
- A Glock model 22 40-caliber pistol, holding eight rounds of ammunition, was recovered where the victim fell, adjacent to a Courtyard 1 apartment building. The weapon was turned over to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation as evidence.
- Sgt. Ben Scott, 43, a supervisory officer at CSU since 2012 and a Columbus Police officer for 17 years before then, fired two shots at the end of Sunday’ s chase.
- Sgt. Scott was one of three officers who responded to the initial call. CSU Cpl. Ben Pack and Lt. Jason Youngblood also were on the scene.
- Without violating the GBI’s investigation, CSU Police were able to release a few more details about the chase that ensued after a CSU student called police to report a man was loading a gun at Courtyard 1, a student apartment complex housing more than 400 students:
- CSU Police were called at 2:35 p.m. Sunday after a student reported seeing someone loading a handgun while sitting in a gazebo adjacent to the apartment buildings.
- Three minutes later, CSU Police arrived on the scene, identified themselves and told the gunman to drop his weapon.
- The man fled, running through Courtyard 1, across University Avenue and then back across University Avenue and eventually re-entering the student apartment complex. Officers were in pursuit the whole time, repeatedly ordering the man to drop his weapon.
- When the man turned and raised his arm, Sgt. Scott fired twice.
- Following standard procedure, Scott was placed on administrative leave with pay. Within five minutes after the shooting, GBI was alerted and took over the investigation into the shooting.
- Five days before this incident, on March 25, Scott passed three Judgmental Pistol Shooting scenarios in a simulator.
- In his most recent personnel evaluation, dated March 8, Scott either met or exceeded expectations on 17 performance criteria evaluated by his supervisor, Lt. Walter L. Brown.
- Scott rose to the rank of corporal with the Columbus Police, earning the department’s highest honor, Officer of the Year, in 2004.
- Before joining the university on Aug. 6, 2012, Scott told CSU Police interviewers that he was interested in the Tuition Assistance Program that the university offers, allowing employees to earn up to six credit hours a semester without charge.
- Scott is currently pursuing a master’s degree in CSU’s Command College, which mostly serves mid-career police professionals. Scott, who earned an advanced high school diploma in Prattville, Ala., received his bachelor’s degree in history from Auburn University-Montgomery.
- CSU’s policy for use of deadly force is taken from a model offered by the Commission on Accreditation for Law Enforcement Agencies.
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