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Officials: Western Illinois University shooting suspect surrenders in Chicago

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 2:39 PM CDT
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CHICAGO (KWQC) - An 18-year-old Western Illinois University student accused of shooting another student in a campus dorm Tuesday night is in custody in Chicago, university officials confirmed in a Facebook post Wednesday afternoon.

According to the post, Kavion Poplous turned himself in at a Chicago Police Department precinct and was taken into custody by the Federal Bureau of Investigations, with the assistance of Chicago police, around 1:35 p.m.

University officials said earlier Wednesday a warrant had been issued for Kavion Poplous on charges of attempted first-degree murder, aggravated battery, and aggravated discharge of a firearm.

“While the suspect has been taken into custody, the Macomb and Quad Cities campuses will remain closed today (Wednesday, Sept. 16),” according to the post. “The University will resume its regular operations, including classes, Thursday, Sept. 17. Campus buildings will remain locked through the end of today (Sept. 16), and all campus residence halls will remain locked through the weekend to ensure residents' privacy.”

“I want to thank the swift work of our Office of Public Safety and other law enforcement personnel and first responders for the assistance they provided,” Interim President Martin Abraham said. “I’d also like to thank law enforcement, as well as our student services staff and so many others, who worked quickly to ensure our students' safety. Our thoughts are with our student who remains hospitalized, and we pray for a speedy recovery.”

Around 10:38 p.m. Tuesday, the university’s Office of Public Safety was notified of a student who had been shot at Thompson Hall, officials said in a media release. At the same time, a fire alarm pull station was activated in Thompson, and the building was evacuated, according to the release.

Officials said a male student was shot by a person known to him, who then fled the scene. The incident, officials said, is believed to be related to a roommate dispute. They added police believe it is an isolated incident.

The injured student was transported to McDonough District Hospital and transferred to another hospital. Officials said the student is out of surgery, but his condition was unknown as of 2:20 p.m. Wednesday, officials said in the release.

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