Appalachian School of Law Shootings

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Wed, 16 Jan 2002

3 Shot Dead, 3 Wounded in School Shooting in U.S.

Xinhua General News Service

Three were killed and three other wounded when a gunman opened fire at a law school in southwestern Virginia Wednesday.

The gunman, a student at the Appalachian School of Law in Grundy, Virginia, was described as “a time bomb” by a local doctor who recently treated him for stress.

One of those killed was the dean of the school, L. Anthony Sutin, a former acting assistant U.S. attorney general. Another faculty member and a student were also killed, said Ellen Qualls, press secretary for Governor Mark Warner.

“The dean of the law school had been executed in his office and a professor had been executed in his office,” said Dr. Jack Briggs, a coroner for Buchanan County. “The man then came down the stairs—before we got there—and shot four students.”

The suspected gunman was handed over to police after being tackled by students at the tiny school of about 170 students. Briggs said the shooter was a foreign student who had difficulty during his first year and had flunked out.

Briggs, who is a physician, said he had treated this student for stress about six months ago. “He was a time bomb waiting to go off,” the physician said.

The three wounded students were taken to Buchanan General Hospital and later transferred to other hospitals for treatment. Two of them were in surgery and the third was in fair condition, according to hospital officials..

Sutin had served as acting general counsel for the Democratic Party and a lawyer for the 1992 presidential campaign of Bill Clinton. He also held various positions in the U.S. Department of Justice, where he was appointed acting assistant attorney general for legislative affairs by then U.S. Attorney General Janet Reno.

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