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Large University of Missouri police presence was response to suicide threat


A large University of Missouri police response on campus April 7 was related to a suicide threat.

But MU Associate Director, Uriah Orland says that the decision to not send a safety notification to students on April 7 after someone called in a suicide threat fell in line with the policy laid out on the university website.  

A police report ABC 17 News obtained from an open records request says a dispatcher heard an individual threatening to commit suicide and could hear the sound of a shotgun slide being racked and a gunshot before the phone call ended. Units rushed to Schurz Hall, where the caller said he was located. After a thorough search units searched Hatch and Bingham Halls but were still unable to find the victim. 

Police later discovered that the call was from an unidentified number from Canada. Orland explained why no notification was sent. 

“We always take the safety of our students to be our number one priority. We will always take calls like this seriously because we certainly don’t want anyone to injure themselves or others. The nature of this call was a single individual who expressed a desire to harm themself and the officers responded accordingly based on that. it wasn’t a wider threat to the campus or the campus community so that’s why there wasn’t an alert put out."

Orland also added that the University of Missouri Police Department does not put out notifications when there are no immediate threats because students could become numb to the alerts and begin to ignore them.

Article Topic Follows: ABC 17 News Investigates

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Mitchell Kaminski

Mitchell Kaminski is from Wheaton, Illinois. He earned a degree in sports communication and journalism from Bradley University. He has done radio play-by-play and co-hosts a Chicago White Sox podcast.


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