Florida A&M University’s surveillance cameras and license plate reading devices were vital in helping investigators identify and arrest two suspects in the recent fatal shooting on campus.
FAMU Police Chief Terence Calloway said several of the 1,532 campus cameras helped Tallahassee Police Department (TPD) detectives identify the vehicle that arrived on Osceola Street carrying a gunman to the campus and the gunman who walked up to the outdoor basketball courts and started shooting at the crowd of players and spectators. One person was killed, and four others were injured in the Sunday, November 27 incident.
Calloway said footage from campus cameras showed the face of the shooter as clearly as if he was standing next to him. Detectives arrested the suspected driver three days after the shooting. They took the suspected shooter into custody on Monday, December 5. Authorities said the shooting stemmed from an exchange on social media. They said the 21-year-old who was killed was not the intended target.
“FAMU is dedicated to maintaining a safe environment where people can live, learn, work and play,” said Calloway. “Our security systems were crucial in the identification of the two suspects and within days both were apprehended. Without that camera system, we would be still trying to put the pieces together.”
Following the shooting, the FAMU Police Department has increased signage, patrols, and campus lighting and strategically added another camera and a license plate reader to better monitor those who enter the campus. At the same time, the University removed hoops from the outdoor courts, which are a popular location for pickup basketball games for students and the community.
In the aftermath of the fatality, President Larry Robinson, Ph.D., reaffirmed FAMU’s commitment to remain open to the community but said measures were being reviewed to make campus facilities safer for both students, staff, and faculty as well as community members.