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How Ohio State University harnessed tech to alert students of campus attack

Campus police officer engaged the suspect, ended threat

 

Ohio State University’s Buckeye Alert system warned students of a campus attacker within minutes of the car and knife attack unfolding Monday morning. Nine people were injured in the attack and the suspect was killed by a campus police officer.

Monica Moll, the school's public safety director, told reporters the attack took place in front of Watts Hall, the location of the Department of Materials Science and Engineering, around 9:52 a.m. ET.

A campus officer nearby engaged the suspect, who was attacking people with a butcher knife, and shot and killed him within minutes.

ONE SUSPECT DEAD, 9 INJURED AFTER ATTACK AT OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY INVOLVING CAR, BUTCHER KNIFE

OSU Emergency Management tweeted a “Buckeye Alert” 9.56 a.m. ET Monday warning students of an active shooter on campus. “Run Hide Fight,” it added. 

“’Run hide fight’ is an ongoing training program, so when you see that referenced in an alert message, that rings a bell with members of the campus community that have been through the training,” explained Monica Moll, Ohio State University’s Public Safety Director, during a press conference Monday afternoon.

“The public safety team has done a lot of training across the community, and again, that’s why they use these keywords in an alert, to remind folks of what their options are, for any violent intruder,” she added.

The University’s “Run Hide Fight” training corresponds with the Department of Homeland Security’s guidelines for situations involving active shooters.

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Subsequent tweets urged students to “continue to shelter in place” and follow the directions of police at the scene. Buckeye Alerts were also sent out via text message, Ohio State University President Michael Drake told reporters Monday.

OSU Emergency Management tweeted that the “Shelter in Place” was lifted at 11.30 a.m. ET. “Scene is now secure. ALL classes are canceled on Columbus campus for the remainder of the day,” it added.

Updates were also provided on the school’s website.

Nearly two dozen communication methods are integrated into the Buckeye Alerts system, according to the Ohio State University website.  New technology was integrated into the system this year to enhance the timely sharing of information, it said.

An 18-year-old Somali man was behind the attack, law enforcement sources told Fox News Monday.

Two law enforcement sources told Fox News the attacker, identified as Abdul Artan, came into the United States as a Somali refugee, and was granted status as a legal permanent resident.

Warning system technology has been in the spotlight recently. In September, for example, authorities in New York sent a smartphone alert to New Yorkers in the hunt for bombing suspect Ahmad Khan Rahami.

Fox News' Jennifer Griffin, Matt Dean and The Associated Press contributed to this report.