Campus News

Elkhart shooting prompts message from Bethel Campus Security

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grocery store shootingA deadly shooting at an Elkhart grocery store prompted Bethel's Director of Campus Security Paul Neel to issue a reminder about potential emergency situations on campus. A gunman shot and killed two women in the Martin's Super Market Wednesday night, Jan. 15. When police arrived on the scene they shot and killed the gunman while he was reportedly waving his gun at the store manager. On Thursday, Jan. 16 Paul Neel released this statement in an email to Bethel staff and faculty. "I know that quite possibly a good number of you have been joining me this morning in watching the news unfold from Elkhart. Any time there is a tragic event, we naturally have many thoughts. When it happens this close to home, it intensifies those feelings. Our thoughts and prayers are focused on the many people affected by the events that happened at Martin's last night. I do want to take this opportunity to remind all of us of things we can do if we were to ever find ourselves facing a similar situation. I begin by being drawn to Jesus' words in Matthew: Do not be afraid of those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather, be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. (Matthew 10:28-31 NIV) Our number one job in a serious situation is to remain calm. You will be communicated with through our PILOT ALERT messages as soon as is possible. The next important piece of information is that you are the best judge of what your next actions should be. There is no way to account for all of the potential scenarios that may arise in this short note, but we want you to know that you have options beyond simply becoming a victim. We recommend three possible actions: RUN - If you can safely get yourself and those around you out of the building, do so. HIDE - If you cannot get away, find a location to hide and wait for responders to come for you. FIGHT - This does not mean you are to actively seek and confront the attacker. When other options are not available, you and those with you should use any means possible to deter and end the attack." According to the South Bend Tribune the gunman was identified as 22 year-year-old Shawn Bair of Elkhart. The Tribune reports that the two people killed by the gunman were 20-year-old Krystle Dikes of Elkhart and a 44-year-old customer. The older victim was not identified because her family had not yet been notified. Investigators are trying to figure out what may have motivated the shooting.
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