|Appalachian School of Law Shootings|
Tue, 22 Jan 2002
Ted Besen says he had yearned to become a defense attorney, but changed his mind in the wake of the slayings of the dean, a professor and another student at the Appalachian School of Law.
“I don’t ever want to defend someone like him,” Besen said.
The former Marine and police officer was among several students who tackled former classmate Peter Odighizuwa on the school’s front lawn after last week’s shootings.
When classes resume Wednesday at the school, Besen, 37, and others said they’ll return with mixed emotions.
“You just feel violated somehow,” Besen said Tuesday at a nearby restaurant.
“I’ve been having bad dreams,” said 42-year-old Mary Kilpatrick. “I guess there’s no more security in law schools than there is any other place.”
Kilpatrick said she and about 20 other students spent most of Monday in the school lounge, scrubbing blood stains from the rug and rearranging furniture.
“It’s therapeutic being back here; it keeps my mind off of things,” Kilpatrick said.
Police say Odighizuwa shot Dean L. Anthony Sutin and Professor Thomas Blackwell in their offices last Wednesday, then opened fire in the school lounge, killing student Angela Dales and injuring three others.
Odighizuwa, 43, had recently learned he’d flunked out for the second time. He’s charged with three counts of capital murder, three counts of attempted capital murder and six weapons charges. Prosecutors say they will seek the death penalty.
“We’re going to have an unofficial class reunion the day he gets the chair,” said Matthew Harvey, who spent the week driving between memorial services with other students.
The school reopened Tuesday, holding a two-hour counseling session and discussing the class schedule for the rest of the semester.
Outside, faculty and students wrote good-bye messages in memorial books that will be given to victims’ families.
“I keep expecting Dean Sutin to come back,” said 22-year-old Melanie Page. “I just miss them all so much.”