University of Utah student murdered on campus

Local News

WATCH: University Officials provide update after 21-year-old U of U student Lauren McCluskey was shot and killed on campus Monday night.

21-year-old McCluskey was a track star at the university. She was a Senior majoring in Communication and was considered an outstanding student.

Her mother told News4Utah she was on the phone with her daughter prior to the shooting.

According to a statement by President Ruth V. Watkins University of Utah President, the university has canceled classes for Tuesday, Oct. 23 to allow students and faculty to grieve this tragic loss. In addition, counseling and support services have been made available to students, staff and faculty. 

A vigil has been planned in her McCluskey’s honor on Wednesday at 5 p.m. on the steps of the John R. Park building located at  201 Presidents Circle.

Mark Halan, the University of Utah Director of Athletics sent News4Utah the following statement:

“Last night, the University of Utah lost one of our own.  Senior track standout Lauren McCluskey was tragically killed in a senseless act.  This news has shaken not only myself but our entire University of Utah athletics family to its core. We have university counselors and psychologists on standby to support Lauren’s teammates, coaches and friends.  Our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and all of those dear to her.”

This incident is still under investigation. 

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More on the shooter

The man suspected of shooting and killing a female University of Utah student on campus was found dead early Tuesday morning. 

Melvin Rowland, 37, was found dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in a downtown Salt Lake City church. 

University of Utah police got word that Rowland was in the area of the Trinity AME Church located at 239 East 600 South. They called Salt Lake City police to assist. SLCPD officers responded and found Rowland about a block away. A foot pursuit ensued, and they chased Rowland to the church and realized he had broken into the building. 

Officers eventually found Rowland dead in one of the rooms inside the church. 

Police believe just before 9 p.m. Monday Rowland shot and killed a female University of Utah student during a dispute. Police weren’t sure of the exact nature of their relationship but said they were acquaintances. 

A campus alert was sent out advising all students and staff to shelter in place. 

The woman was later found dead inside a vehicle on campus. 

Multiple agencies responded to campus to help search for Rowland. Officers canvassed the immediate area, all of the campus and the surrounding area looking for Rowland. 

Hear an update from University police after Rowland is found dead

The shelter-in-place for the campus was lifted at 11:50 p.m. when police believed Rowland had left the area and was no longer a threat to campus.

Governor Gary Herbert shared his condolences following the shooting. “My heart goes out to all who have been dealing with the tragic #UofUShooting tonight,” he said in a tweet. 

The university announced all morning and evening classes are canceled for Tuesday, Oct. 23, but campus services and facilities will remain open. Support services will be made available for students, faculty and staff. 

  • University Counseling Center, 450 SSB, 801-581-6826
  • Office of the Dean of Students, 270 Union Building, 801-581-7066
  • Employee Assistance Programs services can found at 801-587-9319 or 800-926-9619

Alerts from the university can be found http://highalert.utah.edu/.

Watch raw video from the scene: 

The University of Utah’s Center for Student Wellness Victim-Survivor Advocates provide services, resources, and support (including safety planning) to members of the campus community who have experienced or are experiencing domestic violence or other forms of interpersonal violence. The U’s Victim-Survivor advocates can be reached at 801-581-7779.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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