911 calls from Seattle campus shooting released

SEATTLE — One student talks to 911 operators while a classmate attempts to tend to his bleeding neck and chest. Two other callers after witnessing the shooting at a small Seattle university calmly describe their location, the shooter and the chilling scene.

“He walked up behind this guy,” the caller said, adding moments later: “There were two people standing there. And this guy walked up behind one of them, lifted his rifle and shot directly.”

A day after a lone gunman armed with a shotgun opened fire at Seattle Pacific University, Seattle police released three 911 calls recorded shortly after the shooting. The calls reflect a mix of shock, calmness and swift action by students, witnesses and faculty.

The 911 calls show “the remarkable calm and resourcefulness of students, faculty, and other witnesses,” police wrote.

Police said the shooter, who killed a 19-year-old freshman student and wounded two other young people, had 50 additional shotgun shells and a hunting knife. He said after his arrest that he wanted to kill as many people as possible before taking his own life, Seattle police wrote in a statement filed in court Friday.

The suspect, Aaron Ybarra, 26, was ordered held without bail on Friday. He was arrested at the scene after a student tackled him when he was reloading his shotgun, police said.

In one of the recordings, a student calls 911 after his classmate runs into a classroom bleeding from the neck. Operators then talk to the wounded student in an attempt to get a description of the suspect.

“There’s someone shot. I was hit with shrapnel,” the student said. “Looks like birdshot according to the person that is patching me up.”

“Someone was hit directly… and immediately fell,” he adds.

After the student who died was identified as Paul Lee from Portland, Oregon, students began mourning their classmate, leaving notes, posting a picture and praying at a makeshift flower memorial near Otto Miller hall, where the shooting happened.

Lee’s friend and classmate Ben Purcell said he was supposed to meet Lee to study on the hour the shooting happened, but was running late. Lee went ahead to Otto Miller without Purcell.

“He went over and got shot,” Purcell said, shortly after praying at the memorial on Friday. He had learned two hours earlier Lee was the man killed.

“Paul cared about God and people in a special way. And that’s what I want to do too,” Purcell said.

Purcell also left a note on the memorial. It said in part: “I wish we had gotten together earlier to study, because then you wouldn’t have been shot.”

Wounded in the shooting were Sarah Williams, 19, who remained in intensive care Saturday, and Thomas Fowler, 24, who has been discharged.

——

Online:

Seattle university shooting 911 calls: http://bit.ly/1kNVZdj

More in Local News

Woman badly burned in north Everett house fire

Two men escaped unharmed from the burning home on Lombard Avenue.

House passes ban on bump-fire stocks

If the Senate approves, Gov. Jay Inslee is expected to sign it into law.

Man charged with rape, manslaughter of teen dying from overdose

Brian Roberto Varela’s arraignment is scheduled for Monday.

Unitarian Universalist Congregation puts faith to work

Its “religiously liberal” members are open to differing creeds and doctrines.

Aid crews get a dose of digital medicine

iPad app does the math for them so aid crews are free to treat children

Boy, 15, pleads guilty to kicking death of teen in Marysville

Prosecutors are seeking 30 days behind bars, which is the higher end of what’s allowed for minors.

No injuries after fire ravages vacant Marysville house

Firefighters could not prevent flames from causing damage throughout the interior of the home.

Spikes put end to ride from Seattle to Everett in stolen car

Two men were taken into custody at the bottom of Marine View Drive off I-5.

2 arrested after Marysville shooting leaves man brain dead

The victim had shown 1 suspect — a friend — a stack of money he won at the casino, police said.

Most Read