The Hopkins Student Center at State Fair Community College was briefly placed on lockdown Friday afternoon after a student was seen on campus with what appeared to be a rifle.
A campus alert was sent containing the following statement: “At about 2 p.m. today, student Gary Black brandished an Airsoft rifle in the Hopkins Student Services Center parking lot on the Sedalia campus. No shots were fired.
“Campus Resource Deputy David Hockaday apprehended Black and he was taken into custody and arrested by the Pettis County Sheriff’s Department. The Missouri State Highway Patrol was also on scene. PCSD is recommending charges of terroristic threat and illegal use of a weapon.”
According to Dr. Joe Gilgore, dean of student and academic support services at SFCC, an employee of the college noticed a student who was exhibiting signs of “odd” behavior and appeared to be holding a weapon.
“The employee immediately notified me and when I looked out the window I witnessed the same scene,” Gilgore said. “I immediately called officer Hockaday who arrived at the individual’s car after (Hockaday) called 911.
“I also called 911 and when I arrived outside I saw Officer Hockaday with his gun drawn while he was attempting to have the suspect drop his weapon,” Gilgore added. “The man was arguing with Officer Hockaday and the other officers who had arrived on the scene.”
Gilgore stated that because of the positioning of the car door, school employees could not see the orange tip of the Airsoft rifle.
Black, 28, had enrolled as a student at SFCC for the spring semester. Classes are scheduled to begin at the college Monday.
The Hopkins building was briefly on lockdown.
“Hopkins was the only building on lockdown and both the office doors and exterior doors were secured,” Gilgore stated. “The incident was over in a matter of minutes.”
Hope Lecchi can be reached at 660-826-1000 ext. 1484