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January 22, 2013

Texas college on lockdown after shots fired

HOUSTON —  

A shooting on a Texas community college campus wounded three people Tuesday and sent students fleeing for safety as officials placed the campus on lockdown, officials said.

Harris County Sheriff's Maj. Armando Tello said authorities had detained a person of interest. He did not provide any details about the people who were wounded, such as whether they were students or included the person who was arrested.

Authorities thought there could be a second shooter, according to a law enforcement official in Washington who spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the ongoing case.

The school's official Twitter feed said the shooting was between two people and that the situation was under control. It had issued an alert on its website earlier, telling students and faculty to take immediate shelter or avoid the campus.

Aerial footage from local television stations showed police cars and ambulances parked on the Lone Star College System campus about 20 miles north of downtown Houston. Emergency personnel could be seen tending to people on stretchers, while others ran from a building led by officers.

Mark Smith, spokesman for the Harris County Emergency Corps, said four people were taken to two hospitals. He said at least two had gunshot wounds, and one appeared to have had a heart attack related to the shooting. He said one was in critical condition.

Students said they were studying or waiting for classes to start about 12:30 p.m. when they heard gunfire.

"I didn't think they were shots," said Daniel Flores, 19. "It sounded like someone was kicking a door."

He was in a second-floor tutoring lab with about 60 people. Once they realized the sound was gunfire, they fled to the nearby student services center, where authorities kept them for about 30 minutes before letting them go, Flores said.

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