Security heightened, activities continue in wake of 2 slayings o - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

Security heightened, activities continue in wake of 2 slayings on Grambling State campus

(Source: KSLA News 12) (Source: KSLA News 12)
(Source: KSLA News 12) (Source: KSLA News 12)
Two men were found fatally shot on the Grambling State University campus. (Source: Cody Jennings/KSLA News 12) Two men were found fatally shot on the Grambling State University campus. (Source: Cody Jennings/KSLA News 12)
(Source: Cody Jennings/ KSLA News 12) (Source: Cody Jennings/ KSLA News 12)

Activities, including homecoming, continue as scheduled and security is being increased at Grambling State University in the wake of the fatal shootings of a student and a visitor on campus, the school's president says.

Students held a prayer vigil for Grambling State senior Earl Andrews and his friend Monquiarious Caldwell on Wednesday evening in the courtyard near Favrot Student Union .

"He is going to be missed; but I know God picked a beautiful flower," Sadie Warren said of Andrews, her grandson.

And Alicia Caine said Monquiarious Caldwell, who leaves behind a baby daughter, is the second son she has had to bury due to violence.

The two 23-year-old men, both of Farmerville, were shot sometime around midnight Tuesday between two dormitories.

Students said it was between Garner Hall, a male dormitory, and J.D.E. Bowen Hall, an apartment-style residence hall in Tiger Village for female upperclassmen.

Campus spokesman Will Sutton said a female contacted the Grambling police chief minutes after the shootings.

Authorities began receiving 9-1-1 calls at 12:04 a.m. Wednesday.

Officer Thomas Harmon and Sgt. Rodney Williams responded and found both men on the ground.

Investigators say Andrews and Caldwell apparently knew the person who shot them.

No name or description of the shooter has been released.

No arrest has been made.

Andrews and Caldwell graduated about three years ago from Union High in Farmerville. And both played on the school's football team.

"Receiving that first call, I immediately prayed for the families and all those involved because we are a family. We are a tight-knit community," Grambling State President and CEO Richard Gallot Jr. told KSLA News 12.

President Gallot Jr. tweeted about the "Grambling Family" being there for each other. 

In a letter released Wednesday afternoon, he offers his condolences to the homicide victims' families.

He also describes the slayings as an isolated incident and says "we are working with authorities to do all that we can to ensure your safety on campus, our first priority."

News of the fatal shootings prompted authorities to tell students to stay in their rooms, according to texts sent after 2 a.m. Wednesday.

About 5 hours later, students got a second text giving them the all clear and saying the campus would remain open.

The school opened as scheduled Wednesday morning, according to a tweet from the university.

And Ellen D. Smiley, the school's provost and vice president, sent a missive Wednesday urging faculty members to be mindful of the impact the day's events were having on students.

It was just three weeks ago that university officials met with students about campus security, Sutton said.

"We do have an open campus. These are not just campus roads; these are public roads," he said.

"And we encourage students to be alert and vigilant. We give them tips and then we usually do that again."

Posted Wednesday on the University of Louisiana System website is the following statement from President and CEO Jim Henderson:

"We extend our deepest and most heartfelt condolences to the Andrews and Caldwell families.

"Our universities were created to cultivate potential through the pursuit of knowledge. Mr. Andrews, a senior, no longer has the opportunity to obtain the bright future he was working toward.

"We are committed to fostering a culture of safety among our institutions and violence will not be tolerated.

"It is especially heartbreaking for the Grambling community to deal with this senseless tragedy in the midst of homecoming week, a time when students and alumni should be celebrating the spirit of one of the nation’s most historic universities.

"President Gallot and his team are leading the response on campus and assisting local authorities during this investigation. We are here to support him in any way we can."

The deaths of Andrews and Caldwell are being investigated by detectives with the Lincoln Parish Sheriff's Office and Grambling State University police.

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