Virginia Tech Shooting: Lockdown After Two Killed, Including a Police Officer

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Virginia Tech freshmen, Massie Cashion, left, and Kasey Kraft, both from Alexandria, Va., participate in an impromptu candlelight vigil in front of the 4/16 memorial on the campus of Virginia Tech after two shootings on the campus in Blacksburg, Va., Thursday, Dec. 8, 2011. A gunman killed a police officer and then apparently shot himself to death nearby in a baffling attack that shook up the campus nearly five years after it was the scene of the deadliest shooting rampage in modern U.S. history.  (AP Photo/Steve Helber)
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Virginia Tech freshmen, Massie Cashion, left, and Kasey Kraft, both from Alexandria, Va., participate in an impromptu candlelight vigil in front of the 4/16 memorial on the campus of Virginia Tech after two shootings on the campus in Blacksburg, Va., Thursday, Dec. 8, 2011. A gunman killed a police officer and then apparently shot himself to death nearby in a baffling attack that shook up the campus nearly five years after it was the scene of the deadliest shooting rampage in modern U.S. history. (AP Photo/Steve Helber)

Virginia Tech University, the site of the country's worst massacre, is on lockdown after two people, including a police officer, were shot and killed on the campus.

The school said the suspect is at large and students are being told, "Stay indoors. Secure in place."

An alert on the Virginia Tech school's website said: "There is an active campus alert in Blacksburg. Everyone should seek shelter or stay where you are. Blacksburg Transit service is suspended until the alert is lifted."

Virginia Tech spokesman Mark Owczarski said a campus police officer stopped a vehicle shortly after noon today in the school's Coliseum parking lot, near McComas Hall.

"During the traffic stop. the officer was shot and killed. There were witnesses to this shooting," Owczarski said in the statement.

"Witnesses reported to police the shooter fled on foot heading toward the Cage, a parking lot near Duck Pond Drive. At that parking lot, a second person was found. That person is also deceased," he said.

Owczarski said there was a dragnet for the gunman.

VThe campus community should continue to shelter in place and visitors should not come to campus," he said.

The school is saying that the suspect is a white male wearing a gray sweatpants, a gray hat with a neon green brim, a maroon hoodie and a backpack, according to the Associated Press.

Wednesday was the school's last day of classes for the semester and today is Reading Day, a day for studying on which classes are not held. Fall semester final exams begin on Friday.

Virginia Tech was the site of the deadliest mass shooting in the United States in 2007 when Seung-Hui Cho killed 33 students, faculty members and himself during a shooting rampage on the campus. Cho was a senior in English at the school.

After the shooting at Virginia Tech, tighter security measures were instituted in schools all over the country, including new protocols for notifying students of emergencies that utilized text messages and social media sites like Twitter and Facebook.

On Wednesday, Virginia Tech officials appeared in court to attempt to block $55,000 in fines connected to the 2007 shooting, according to the Associated Press The Education Department claims that the school violated the law by waiting over two hours before notifying students via email that a students had been shot. The school argues that it acted appropriately and is being held to high standards that did not exist at the time of the shooting.

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