Student Shot At Rap Gig
Detectives are questioning a 22-year-old Nottinghamshire man after a young male student was shot in the stomach at a rap gig at Loughborough University in England.
Aaron Waller, the 21-year-old victim, was shot in a brawl that broke out at 2:45 a.m. March 12, during a performance by R&B act Pretty Ricky.
He is said to be in a stable condition and is recovering in hospital with his family by his side.
Witnesses reportedly told Daily Mirror the shooting occurred moments after a CS gas canister was set off and fighting broke out between students and members of the public. Six other people were taken to hospital after the violence.
"People were freaking out – no one really knew what was going on," 18-year-old business student Rebecca Abraham told the U.K. paper.
"I was standing outside the room when I heard the gunshots. It was awful because I couldn’t find my friends to see if they were all right.
"There were a lot of people crying, a lot of people unable to breathe. They were streaming out coughing and in tears. That’s when the CS gas hit me – it was hanging in the air."
The concert was in the university student union’s Room One venue.
Raaj Chandarana, 20, who lives in campus halls, was on the dance floor in the main stage area inside the union when the CS gas was sprayed.
"All of a sudden, people were sprinting and the DJ shouted ‘cover your mouths’. I just couldn’t believe what was going on. There was a fight and then the gas was let off," he told the Leicester Mercury.
"Everyone was panicking and running all over the place and one of my friends went down because he inhaled a lot of gas. I thought that was bad enough, but when we came outside I heard gunshots behind me – there were about five or six. It was quite scary."
The student union had been open to the public for the gig, which promoter Touch ’n’ Tease described on its Web site as a "roadblock event" to be attended by "Premiership footballers along with other VIPs."
Forensic officers have completed searches of the venue, which was cordoned off for most of the following day.
In a joint statement with the students’ union, university vice chancellor professor Shirley Pearce said Loughborough students are working closely with the police on the matter.
"The incident has shocked us all – we are a small, close-knit community and events such as this are, thankfully, incredibly rare.
"Our first thoughts are with the victim and his family. Support services are available for any students or staff affected by this incident."
Superintendent Steph Pandit said none of the other injured people were seriously hurt and all have been released from hospital.