EDITOR'S NOTE: On January 28, Charges were dropped against Carlton Berry, the man who was first accused in the shooting on the campus of Lone Star College.
HOUSTON – Security, both campus police and deputy constables, were very visible Wednesday as students and staff returned to class one day after a shooting at Lone Star College North Harris.
Administrators wanted students to feel safe.
“I don’t know what to say,” Victoria Rodriguez, a student, said. “It’s pretty not safe anywhere anymore.”
“I was there (on campus yesterday during the shooting),” Tyler Straight, another student, said. “It was just a very scary moment and I just don’t want to re-live that again and I just hope that it’s a safe environment.”
Tuesday, their “safe environment” closed while armed deputies searched campus for two hours looking for a gunman. Students and staff were evacuated, and paramedics treated the wounded.
Authorities said Carlton Berry, 22, pulled a gun and started shooting after arguing with another man on campus near the library. Berry wounded himself, the victim and a maintenance man who just happened to be in the area.
James Rayl and Christopher Suarez have business class in the library and now have questions about their safety.
“(I’m) wondering where security was (during the shooting),” Rayl said. “This is supposed to be a gun-free zone. Why aren’t they enforcing that?”
“Since the shooting here, I felt it (was) a little dangerous,” Suarez said. “But not anymore because it’s a new morning and what not. We’ll see how things go today.”
Martial arts professor Kit Van Cleave told KHOU 11 News she changed planned Wednesday lectures after the shooting.
“We’re going to spend a lot more time on gun safety and that kind of thing in class,” Van Cleave said. “There are so many guns in America these days it’s an epidemic. It’s a national health epidemic and we have to do something about this.”
Some on campus would like to arm teachers, and maybe students, if those people have permits to carry concealed weapons.
“I think it would probably be a lot safer,” Rodriguez said.
“I understand teachers (having the right to carry on campus), but I don’t understand students,” Anthony Tejeda, a student said.
For now, administrators are relying on patrols, hoping that is enough to make their environment safe.