Gunshots fired near Campus Center

A shooting occurred during a Halloween party at the Ronald Tutor Campus Center at approximately 11:30 p.m. Wednesday, authorities said.

Shooting Photo

Razan Al Marzouqi | Daily Trojan

Four victims were wounded and immediately transported to a local hospital, according to an official from the LAPD. One victim was in critical condition.

A suspect was taken into custody at 1:30 a.m. No victims were USC affiliated.

“We were waiting outside to get into the party and we were waiting for a while — maybe 20 or 30 minutes,” said Olivia Gordon, a freshman majoring in psychology. “And all of the sudden, as soon as people started going inside, there were multiple gunshots and everyone who was in line for the party ducked and we all ran.”

USC’s Dept. of Public Safety issued a Trojan Alert at 12:02 a.m. Thursday, asking students to take “shelter in place and avoid opening doors for unknown persons.”

Campus was later shut down.

“I heard three gun shots but I think it’s because — there might have been more than that but maybe because of all the people screaming made it so I couldn’t hear,” said Christina Nour, a freshman majoring in civil engineering building science. “Then I ducked. It didn’t feel real. It felt like it was a movie because I really haven’t experienced anything like this before. I was running as fast as I can trying to make sure I didn’t get trampled or tripped. I just ran as fast as I could, as far as I could. Then I met up with the friends I came with. It was just really crazy.”

Daniel Rothberg, Annalise Mantz and Yasmeen Serhan contributed to this report.

65 replies
  1. Anonymous
    Anonymous says:

    The top fraternities would never allow such a behavior? You’ve gotta be kidding me. They have sex in public and the drug/alcohol scene is way worse. You must not know what your son is truly around.

    • Jack
      Jack says:

      Sex in public+drug/alcohol scene = shootings?

      Your math is suspect. I’d take public fornication and intoxication over shootings any day, and I challenge you to find a single person who would disagree with me.

    • SC Mom w/ Greek Son
      SC Mom w/ Greek Son says:

      Kappa Sig is not a top fraternity from what my son has told me. So that whole story about the girl on the roof does not apply in my opinion.

  2. Get your facts straight...
    Get your facts straight... says:

    It wasn’t a BSA party!! It was a party by an outside promoter who paired up with a few students to get the word out. NOT BSA. Parties like these have always been at campus center for the past few years without trouble and yes, they do involve the NPHC Greeks a majority of the time that’s why it was advertised as Freak or Greek. They’re held at the campus center because of safety, but some things are just not foreseen. You can try to pinpoint the blame on an org, but that doesn’t solve anything. What’re you gonna stop USC black students from congregating at BSA? Just pray for the victims involved and maybe look at the bigger issue, gun reform and community reform. We are in the hood….

    • Jack
      Jack says:

      You need to get your facts straight. The reports CLEARLY indicate that this was a BSA party. Stop spreading misinformation and trying to shift the blame.
      “The shooting occurred around 11:30 p.m. Wednesday outside the Ronald Tutor Campus Center, where a long line of people were waiting to be checked into the party held by the Black Student Assembly.”
      “USC officials said about 400 people were attending the “Freaks and Geeks” Halloween party, which was sponsored by the Black Student Assembly.” (this article also notes that the party continued for hours after the shooting, which is disgustingly irresponsible on the BSA and the promoter’s part)
      “…the party held by the Black Student Assembly.”

        • ras
          ras says:

          You seem to be more concerned that the shooter not be disparaged because he is black then the fact he GUNNED DOWN 4 PEOPLE IN THE MIDDLE OF USC LAST NIGHT!!!! This is the priority in plain view we get from a generation poisoned with political correctness!

          • Twan
            Twan says:

            You don’t know who is black and who isn’t. You be sure and tell everybody about your suburban “black” friends that you hung with back in the day. You are nothing but a racist bigot f-cracker!

          • Jack
            Jack says:

            uh, Twan, the shooter was black…there are pictures of the arrest all over twitter. And calling someone “cracker” kind of kills your credibility when it comes to calling people racist.

    • Gabriel
      Gabriel says:

      Why did the BSA scrub all their internet content of the event. What are you hiding?

      Much like Benghazi and Obama, soon we will know everything and people are going to pay!

    • Tom Jones
      Tom Jones says:

      Then why did BSA take it off their events page and why does it come up under BSA when “Freak or Greek” is typed on Google?

        • BSA Sponsored Event, Yes?
          BSA Sponsored Event, Yes? says:


          USC Officials told LA Times BSA sponsored “Freaks or Greeks” event,

          “University officials said that the party was sponsored by the Black Student Assembly and attended by about 400 people. None of those involved in the shooting were students at USC.

          A flier for the “Freak or Geek” party notes that it was produced by “SC Hype.” It was dubbed “The Biggest Halloween Costume Party.””

          That makes the scrubbing of the BSA website an apparent attempt to cover their tracks.

          Google is not racist!

  3. Gabriel
    Gabriel says:

    Another video you need to watch about this promoter’s previous event! The guy behind the bar clearly has a gun in his pants!


    You all are getting besides the point, which is in fact that there were victims who were hurt and we should be concerned about their safe recovery.

    If you want to call the party put on in the campus center a ghetto nightclub okay whatever but I must add that I could find some equally if not worse things to say about the hidden activity that occurs on the row and other campus parties.

    There have been many successful parties put on by this organizer at the campus center. The purpose of having it at the campus center was to provide a safe place on campus where students could enjoy themselves. The promoters and student organizers had no way of knowing that someone would come on to campus and disturb the peace.

    They took precautions by having police and security there at the event.

    Let’s not racialize this event. There were non-African-Americans there as well. Look at the reports so far it hasn’t been only what you would call “ghetto” locals at the party. There were students from many races and backgrounds present.

    There are many non-students who come to USC parties. Whether it be on campus, on the row, or at someone’s dorm it is not a relatively new issue.

    I, as, a student just want to pray for the victims and their families. I now they are not USC students and you all could care less but I know there are people out there hurting.

    I think it is within the best interest in our community that we figure out better preventive methods instead of figure-pointing and speculating about the event’s content.

    • SC Mom w/ Greek Son
      SC Mom w/ Greek Son says:

      Is this your previous successful event?

      I am horrified at what this video depicts. Last night my son was ministering to his fraternity brothers on the Row the word of God without alcohol and without licentious women. How dare anyone associate this on campus event with the SC Greek system.

        • SC Mom w/ Greek Son
          SC Mom w/ Greek Son says:

          Yes, same room as last nights event.

          Something is truly wrong at SC and it has nothing to do with the Row. The top fraternities would never allow such behavior!

    • Concerned Student
      Concerned Student says:

      It’s hard not to racialize it when the only reason this happened is that the BSA promoted the party to a ton of locals. If this had been at a frat house, or if locals hadn’t been invited, this would not have happened.

      Want a better preventive method? Stop letting the BSA throw parties on campus, and stop letting locals anywhere near campus. There, problem solved. People don’t get shot at frat parties. People get shot when locals show up.

  5. Not a happy parent
    Not a happy parent says:

    I thnk many people are getting off base in regards to the whole greek thing and what this has to do with it. I am a freshman who is not in a sorority but has many friends who are. There are parties all the time off campus and the issue and problem is that USC should not be hosting these types of events with non students. My daughter lives on campus and its unsettling that so many people came to campus last night. There are plenty of things to do in LA and parties on the Row, we do not need any more. Dont blame greek life becuse people will party regardless. I do think that if our school wanted to minimize the partying on the row, it could be done. My daughter doesnt really drink at all and has told me some reallly interesting stories…

    • Pike #1
      Pike #1 says:

      This had NOTHING to do with Greek life. This was a BLACK STUDENTS ASSOCIATION party. The Row had nothing to do with it. The DT should be reporting who was behind the party so that people don’t get the wrong idea and blame the Greek system.

  6. Bob
    Bob says:

    USC has an obligation to be an open campus and host some community events.

    It is the price they pay for being an International institution and for absorbing city property & community real estate.

    Campus police can only do so much. Some shootings are unpreventable.

    I would suggest a stronger vetting process for groups that want to have events on campus.

      • Bob
        Bob says:

        You are being silly.

        USC receives millions of dollars each year from the Federal government (aka taxpayer dollars) and in private donations.

        No serious institution will want to touch USC if USC decides to become a country club or gated community for middle-class White students … which seems to be what you and some other posters want.

        • George
          George says:

          I’m not advocating for some gated “country club” university. I recognize that USC is a diverse school (most international in the country, in fact). And I don’t normally have a problem with non-students on our property. As long as they respect the students, the property, and their surroundings, I couldn’t care less what they do.

          I’m in disagreement with your notion that the surrounding community can just feel entitled to come onto our campus, given that the university has some sort of “requirement.” Unless there is a true reason (academic, in most cases), non-students have no business to just hang out on our campus. It’s private property governed by a private institution that receives a lot of “membership dollars” (aka tuition) for the “members” (students) to attend. Thus, USC’s property, USC’s rules. The requirement USC has is to protect its institution and those that pay for it. I suppose that because you get tax breaks from our “lovely” government, I can just hang out on your property whenever I want, right? Think of any private business or venue; in their world, it’s trespassing. Why shouldn’t that apply here?

          And let’s be clear: USC receives far too much money from private donors to just allow unnecessary risk, especially to property, or more importantly, lives. What “serious institutions” are you referring to that wouldn’t support that?

      • Ann
        Ann says:

        It is a private school, surrounded by a much larger community in which they have purchased
        property , housing, & shopping centers. The campus itself may be private but, the rest is apart
        of the surrounding community.

        • George
          George says:

          Agree to disagree, mostly. The property USC owns can be privately enforced on a case by case basis. Sure, the UV and other outdoor areas may be public, but under no circumstances should a non-USC individual be allowed into USC Housing unless they are a documented guest. It all depends on what you mean by “apart [sic] of the surrounding community.” Physically, yes. When it comes to authorization, it depends – mostly, any property owned by USC that they designate as private gives non-USC people absolutely no right to enter.

    • Jack
      Jack says:

      An obligation to allow thugs on campus? I think not. If you look like a local, DPS should be stopping and frisking you every time they see you on campus. They need to keep the rest of us safe.

      • Swann
        Swann says:

        And what does a local look like? How do you propose DPS decide who to stop and frisk? I’m not sure whether I look like a local or not, but I guarantee if DPS began profiling (because that’s what you’re suggesting) they’d have a whole different problem on their hands.

  7. Gabriel
    Gabriel says:

    USC’s academic rise has been extraordinary. It has attracted many students who could have chosen Ivys. There seems to be a lag in the elevation of the social atmosphere or at least appreciation of the urban location, national reputation as a party scene the Row has created (Playboy # 2 rated party school 2012), impact of USC allowed raves (see Google LA Hype present SC hype for an uncensored video or visit the Row at 1 a.m. on another weekend than Parents weekend) on the not so extraordinary social climate created at USC. The academic and social climate are out of sync. Only one will prevail and I would like it to be USC as a top university.

    Other top universities in urban environments do not seem to have USC’s violence and seemingly well-earned party school reputation…Columbia in Spanish Harlem/ Yale in New Haven. Perhaps we can all learn from them. What social atmosphere have their admins encouraged that we might encourage at USC. Their students seemed socially fulfilled and their academic standing cemented as top universities in diverse urban environments.

  8. Gail Meyer
    Gail Meyer says:

    We have a freshman daughter at USC. We are from MN. We had several people tell us how bad the area was & that they would never send their kid to USC. I kept saying how impressed I was with security. Obviously there are now concerns!! Something didn’t work & needs to be changed. Why are non students allowed on campus? It’s a private school. Gates surround campus- Use them!!! Buy up more property surrounding campus and rebuild. We need answers and solutions on this one!!!

  9. USC Alumna
    USC Alumna says:

    What is sad is yhay with all that money USC has
    Thanks to all that tuition that is paid, does not have more campus security present during events
    It should be common sense.

  10. Stefanie
    Stefanie says:

    My son is a freshman at USC, and our family was there last weekend for USC Family Weekend. During our visit, I was impressed by the caliber of students we met. This is not an out of control party school with excess drugs, alcohol and sexual behavior. We went to a fraternity tailgate party, and the kids were respectful and having fun without sex, drugs or alcohol. I went to a large private east coast university with an incredible party scene in the 1980’s, so I understand that scene–USC is NOT like that.

    • Carol
      Carol says:

      I also have a freshman and was there for family weekend. Not to take away from what you said, but I know a lot of the normal parties were not in full swing during that weekend. Although USC is a fine school with amazing students, the partying is very much a part of the social life off campus. That is why I am so upset that our school would allow so many non-students to come to a party on the campus.

    • Anette
      Anette says:

      Stefanie, I sure that what you saw was especially for that weekend, I, like you also attended college and grad school in the 1980’s, and when parents were on campus, of course we were on our best behaviour (come on now) you know how it goes.

  11. USC Mom
    USC Mom says:

    I just saw Toni guinyard interview someone in charge of DPS on NBC News. I was disappointed in his mannerism and comments. I felt he was shrugging off the incident….making comments like I hope the students didn’t party too hard last night and are ready for classes today. This is serious business. They need to do something about the security on campus. If you are not a student at USC you have nobusiness at a campus party.

  12. Robin
    Robin says:

    Gabriel, you need to get your facts straight. There were no USC students, faculty, or staff involved. We may have this incident but USC still has high security and has done a lot to keep the campus safe even compared to ivy league campuses. Here’s an article you should read: Realize that usc is not listed, yet you see yale and duke up in the crime-zone rankings.

  13. Gabriel
    Gabriel says:

    1. Neon Tommy referenced the party as “Freak or Greek

    2. The large Greek parties with alcohol, drug and sexual excesses mark USC as a party haven and attract so inclined. Ask Playboy about it. There are few, if any, other more sophisticated social options at USC so the reputation is solidified.

    • Jack
      Jack says:

      This was not a Greek party. It was a BSA party. The Greek system had nothing to do with it. That’s why there was such a large crowd of locals. They advertised it as the biggest costume party in LA, open to all, and the promoter had the gall to continue promoting it on Twitter for two hours after the shootings.

      Don’t blame the Greek system, it had nothing to do with this travesty. It had everything to do with the BSA inviting locals on campus.

  14. Sean
    Sean says:

    I’m not quite sure what greek life has to do with it…After all, this was a party on campus at the Tutor Center. No faculty, staff, or students were involved. This was somebody going on campus with a gun and firing- a matter of poor security evidenced by the fact that it took 3 hours to find the bastard.

  15. Gabriel
    Gabriel says:

    USC admins need to decide if USC is a near future leading university or a frat rat party school. It just is not working to be both. The decision will be made for USC if admin does not act. Top students and their parents will not choose or remain in an urban L.A. scholl where large Greek parties, alcohol, drugs and smokin dj’s appear regularly along with violence and superficial social and sexual behavior. It would seem creating a more sophisticated social atmosphere in keeping with the vision for the school is desirable, but a focus in that direction is not happening. So admins, what is USC’s future, stellar academic university or urban party school?

    • Observer
      Observer says:

      Gabriel- your comments are completely out of line. The shooting occurred on campus at the new Tudor Student Center. It was NOT a Greek frat party with “alcohol, drugs and smoking djs”. The LA TImes reported that the suspect now in custody is not even a USC student and that the shooting was related to a dispute between one of the victims and the gunman.What is scary is that someone with a loaded weapon could wander onto the campus where police were present and open fire on innocent students right across from Tommy Trojan.

      • Anette
        Anette says:

        OMG observer, thank you!!! I was wondering when some1 was going to respond to her. Her comments were so “all over the place” that I just didn’t bother.

    • Asim
      Asim says:

      Gabriel, you seem to have an agenda against USC. Why else would you inject Greek system into a university sanctioned non-Greek event?

      • Anette
        Anette says:

        Thanks Asim, for asking that question. I wondered that exact same thing. Yeah Gabriel, what is your deal/agenda with USC?

    • UTwister
      UTwister says:

      Your comments are idiotic and misguided. You are using this incident to vent your jealous hatred of an outstanding university.

    • George
      George says:

      Not even Greek here, but Gabriel, let me help you save time. Since you’re such a Greek hater, just make one stock comment about how much you hate the system and use it on every article, since that seems to be your intent everywhere anyway.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] Following the shooting, the campus went on lockdown for a short time and students and faculty were sent a Trojan Alert asking them to ‘seek shelter in place and avoid opening doors for unknown persons,’ according to the campus newspaper the Daily Trojan. […]

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