|Appalachian School of Law Shootings|
Sat, 19 Jan 2002
The Nigerian immigrant and failed law student accused of killing three people at a Virginia law school spent at least seven years in the Portland area driving a Tri-Met bus in the 1980s.
Tri-Met authorities said Peter O. Odighizuwa, 43, drove a bus from July 1982 through May 1989, when he was fired.
Two months later, Odighizuwa sued the company, claiming he was unlawfully discharged, according to Multnomah County court records.
Odighizuwa, according to his claim, had been on a bus at the Gateway Transit Center when a Tri-Met officer ordered him off.
Instead, Odighizuwa drove the bus back to the company’s garage and the Tri-Met officer followed in a chase along interstate 205 that involved a crash. In his claim, Odighizuwa said that the Tri-Met officer acted unreasonably by trying to run his bus off the road. He withdrew the claim 10 days later
Odighizuwa’s employment record at Tri-Met included citations for reporting to work under the influence of drugs or alcohol, deliberate destruction of the district’s property and for posing an immediate or potential danger to public safety, said Mary Fetsch, a Tri-Met spokeswoman.
Fetsch said she did not have Odighizuwa’s case file and could not provide details of the incident that led to his firing.
His local lawyer, Michael Schumann, remembered the case and when told his former client was now in custody in Virginia, said, “That’s the same guy? It’s amazing it’s the same person.”
Odighizuwa, a law student who recently flunked out of school for a second time, opened fire with a handgun at the Appalachian School of Law in Grundy, Va., on Wednesday, police said.
Dean L. Anthony Sutin and professor Thomas Blackwell were slain in their offices and student Angela Dales, 33, died later at a hospital. Three other students were wounded.