MSU Mass Shooting Suspect Identified: Man Who Pleaded Guilty to Gun Crime But Avoided Prison
CORRECTION, Feb. 14, 2023: An earlier version of this story inaccurately described the criminal history of Anthony McRae. The report cited The Detroit News, which issued a correction Tuesday. The text and headline of this article have been revised.
The man who shot and killed three people and wounded another five at Michigan State University on Monday night has been identified.
Officials said Anthony Dwayne McRae committed the heinous act of violence before apparently turning the gun on himself.
McRae, 43, was arrested in June 2019 on a felony charge of carrying a concealed pistol without a concealed carry permit, The Detroit News reported Tuesday.
Four months later, the report said, he agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge of possession of a loaded firearm in a vehicle, and prosecutors dismissed the felony charge.
McRae was sentenced to 12 months probation in November 2019, according to the News.
On Monday night, he “shot himself miles away from campus while being confronted by police,” according to WILX-TV.
No motive has been uncovered for the shootings, police said Monday night, and no connection had been found between McRae and the university.
Names of the victims were being withheld until all their families had been notified, the station reported.
According to the News, McRae moved in with his father on the north side of Lansing, Michigan, about a year ago.
“He’s never done any harm to anyone,” neighbor Megan Bender said of McRae’s father, Mike McRae. “He’s just an old man, minds his business.”
Bender said that she believed Anthony McRae had been headed home after the shooting when he was confronted by police, based on her knowledge of the location where that confrontation occurred.
She told the News that, after listening on a police scanner to reports of the shooting and law enforcement’s response overnight, she “felt relieved” that McRae hadn’t made it home.
The shooting began Monday night at an academic building and later moved to the student union, a popular spot for students to meet to study or eat together, according to The Associated Press.
As first responders officers searched the East Lansing campus for the shooter, students hid where they could.
Four hours after the first shots were reported, police announced the suspect’s death.
“This truly has been a nightmare we’re living tonight,” said Chris Rozman, interim deputy chief of the campus police department.
Rozman said two people were killed at Berkey Hall and the third at the MSU Union. Five other victims were reportedly in critical condition at Sparrow Hospital.
Michigan State has about 50,000 students, including 19,000 who live on campus.
All classes, sports and other activities were canceled for 48 hours.
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