Officer describes helping student shot on campus
- Associated Press
- August 26, 2014 - 1:41 PM
SEATTLE — A police officer responding to the chaotic scene of a shooting at Seattle Pacific University tried to help a mortally wounded victim breathe who had been shot in the neck as other officers frantically searched the campus for any other possible assailants.
More than 300 pages of police reports on the June 5 shooting describe a frantic scene as officers tried to assist victims who lay bleeding as well as find the gunman. The reports, obtained by KOMO-TV (http://is.gd/bpXhvw ), give a detailed look at the shooting that left one student dead and two others wounded.
One officer detailed his efforts to aid the victim who died, 19-year-old SPU student Paul Lee. In a statement, the officer said that when he arrived, Lee was lying on the sidewalk with "severe gunshot trauma to his upper left throat area."
"During this time it was not known how many shooters or victims there were. The scene was one of chaos and confusion," the officer said.
Lee began to lose consciousness, so the officer helped him breathe easier by clearing his airway. The officer continued speaking with Lee, attempting to determine if Lee knew who the shooter was, but the victim was unable to speak.
Officers searched the campus, patting down some students they encountered and going room to room. It was eventually determined there was only one suspect.
Aaron Rey Ybarra is accused of fatally shooting Lee and wounding two others. A student building monitor stopped Ybarra by pepper-spraying and tackling him as he reloaded his shotgun, authorities said.
In addition to a shotgun, Ybarra was armed with a hunting knife and carried more than 50 rounds of ammunition, police said. He has pleaded not guilty to premeditated first-degree murder and other charges in King County Superior Court.
His defense attorney has not disputed accounts of the shooting, but Ybarra suffers from mental illness and was unaware of his actions "until he heard a girl screaming."
In the police reports, officers said Ybarra told them he had not been sure if he "had been dreaming this incident or if it had been real."
Ybarra also told police he wasn't a student at the campus but had been planning the shooting for a while and had toured the area.
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