On March 29 at 2:30 p.m., the UCCS campus came to a halt along with the three other University of Colorado campuses. Classes, clubs, and activities went silent for a minute to honor the 10 lives taken in the Boulder King Soopers shooting on March 22. The UCCS clocktower also rang 10 times, once for each victim of the shooting.
On March 22, a man entered King Soopers grocery store on Table Mesa Drive in Boulder and killed 10 people with a gun. This shooting occurred ten days after the National Rifle Association eliminated the ban on assault weapons in Boulder.
Boulder police officer Eric Talley was killed in the shooting. In an article by USA Today, Chief of the Boulder Police Department Maris Herold said, “Officer Eric Talley died a hero. I want his children to know that their father saved dozens of innocent lives.”
Herold added, “Moving forward, we must work together to find solutions to the gun violence traumatizing our communities. This is what Eric, his family and all families impacted by these devastating events deserve.”
In a March 23 email statement, UCCS Chancellor Venkat Reddy said, “My heart breaks for the victims, their families and all those who loved them. It breaks, too, for the impact on our CU Boulder family. As the campus and surrounding community grieve, we send our deepest support and condolences, and will continue to offer our support in the days to come.”
UCCS students expressed a range of emotions and thoughts regarding the shooting. Cassandra Trevino, a freshman double majoring in criminal justice and psychology, said, “It is such a sad thing to hear about and even worse is that these [shootings] occur so often. My thoughts and prayers go out to the victims and their families.”
Freshman political science major Keenan Powell said that police officers in many cases arrive at the scene after a lot of damage has been done. He feels that individuals should arm themselves to prevent more lives taken by shootings.
“The idea of putting my life in the hands of others who are only so capable of offering aid is an uncomfortable thought,” Powell said. “I plan to obtain my concealed carry license at 21 and increase my odds significantly for acting against those who would do myself and the ones I love harm.”
The UCCS Police website provides resources for what to do in the case of an active shooter. “Though we hope we never encounter an active shooter situation on the University of Colorado Colorado Springs campus, we know preparation and advance planning can guide our actions and help reduce the negative impacts of such a tragic event.”
The website walks through a step by step outline of what to do depending on where the threat is. Many of these general guidelines remain the same regardless of where the threat is taking place.
UCCS Police advises students to try to stay calm and collected, find a spot out of sight to shelter in, tell others around you to hide as well, secure doors and windows of your hiding spot as much as possible, call 911 and not come out of hiding until you are given the “all clear command” from a police officer or UCCS staff member.
UCCS Police also recommends that students sign up for UCCSAlerts because this is how UCCS communicates with students in a time of emergency. This can be done at the following link.
In his email statement, Reddy said, “Support is also available to any members of the Mountain Lion family who may need it. Students can visit the Wellness Center. Faculty and staff can utilize the Colorado State Employee Assistance Program or the UCCS HealthCircle Primary Care Clinic at the Lane Center.”