Appalachian School of Law Shootings

This shows the part of each story that mentions how Peter O. was captured. The full text of these stories is here, while an index is here

Thu, 17 Jan 2002


Hugh Dougherty
Birmingham Post

Four students overpowered a gunman who went on a shooting spree at their US college last night, killing three people in what a doctor described as ‘executions’.

The four tackled the man while he was still armed with a .38 semi-automatic pistol and managed to hold him until police arrived at the Appalachian School of Law, in Grundy, Virginia.

Gunman Peter Odighizuma, aged 43, was being held in jail last night. One of the dead men was the Dean - Anthony Sutin - the chief legal adviser to former Presidential candidate Al Gore’s failed bid for the White House in 2000. He had also been an assistant US attorney-general in Washington before being appointed to the college.

The doctor who was the first medical worker on the scene said Mr Sutin had been ‘executed’ with shots to the head, and another member of staff had been shot in the back as he lay on the ground. A third staff member was also killed.

‘It appears as though some of these shots were after one professor was down and they were shot at point-blank range,’ said Dr Jack Briggs.

‘Two shots were fired into the dean - in the head. It appears he was executed.

‘It looked like a war zone. There were bodies everywhere.’ Two of the staff members were apparently shot in front of their secretaries before the gunman went on a spree in which he shot randomly at students.

The doctor said the gunman was a ‘foreign exchange student’ and had been on the point of being told to leave the law school which has 170 students.

‘Four students tackled him and took him down,’ said the doctor.

‘They got him down and kept him for the police. I do not believe he had given up his weapon.

‘This student was a foreign student who had had difficulty. He flunked out of school last year.

‘He was given another chance, but this was the end of the first semester. I believe that the dean was about to tell him that he would have to leave.

‘He took his anger out on the

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