Award-winning student news since 1978

The Brookhaven Courier

Award-winning student news since 1978

The Brookhaven Courier

Award-winning student news since 1978

The Brookhaven Courier

Two dead in North Lake College shooting

By Stephanie Salas-Vega and Juan Betancourt
Associate Layout Editor and Web Editor

Photos by Willie R. Cole | Lauretta Hill, Dallas County Community College District  commissioner of public safety and security (left), and Christa Slejko, North Lake College, president (right), give a press conference May 3, after an apparent murder-suicide where two people were left dead.

Two people were found dead after an apparent murder-suicide shooting at North Lake College May 3.

Districtwide notices were sent at 11:43 a.m. through the Dallas County Community College District’s emergency alert management system. The alerts, also tweeted by North Lake, said the campus was under an intruder lockdown and warned others to stay away from the campus.

Irving Police searched the campus for an hour and found the dead bodies of the suspect and victim, according to CNN.

According to the Irving Police Department, Janeera Nickol Gonzalez, a 20-year-old student, was found dead in a common study area in the first floor of P Building. Police searched the buildings and found Adrian Victor Torres, a 21-year-old former student, dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound in a locker room shower stall in F Building.

In an interview with WFAA, Lucia Gonzalez, Janeera’s mother, said her daughter did not see Torres as a threat. “He had been stalking her for quite a while, but she didn’t make anything of it,” she said. The Gonzalez family said Janeera never dated Torres and were not friends. Witnesses told the family Torres approached Janeera and yelled, “You know who I am and you know why I am here.”

Janeera was studying kinesiology and was preparing to graduate in a few weeks, according to WFAA.

According to the Dallas Morning News, Janeera’s family went to North Lake to look for her when she did not respond to text messages that afternoon.

When the shooting occurred students, staff and faculty were told to go to the nearest room and lock or barricade the door for their safety.

In an interview with the DMN, Nasrin Nanbakhsh, a math tutor, said she was leaving C Building, which connects to the gallery area where the incident took place, when she saw Torres and Janeera. Nanbakhsh said the victim was sitting on a chair facing Torres when he shot her three times. Nanbakhsh said she ran back to her classroom and told her students to lock the doors and be quiet.

Ali Washington, a student, said he was on his way to his class in the P Building at about 11:30 a.m. He said he noticed the building was empty and the lights were off and decided to return upstairs. That is when he saw SWAT team going into the building yelling at people and asking for directions to F Building.

A mixed group of police officers move to enter another building. The officers escorted students, staff and faculty from the campus when the conditions were safe.

“I got escorted by the police to the library and heard about what was going on,” Washington said.

Giovani Flores, a student taking classes at North Lake and Brookhaven College, said he was in C Building attending class when the shooting occurred. He said the whole situation was shocking and scary.

“On behalf of the entire district, I want to express our grief and sadness to our North Lake family,” Joe May, DCCCD chancellor, wrote in a districtwide email. “Now we must move forward as a community to consult each other and to help one another during the difficult time.”

“We’re just so devastated that something would happen on our campus,” Christa Slejko, North Lake president, said at a news conference.

James McLellan, an Irving police media relations officer (left), and Hill update the press conference with information about the campus shooting.

James McLellan, an Irving police spokesman, said the City of Irving’s Family Advocate Center will provide crisis counseling for anyone in need. Lauretta Hill, DCCCD commissioner of public safety and security, said May and Slejko are looking at providing services to students affected by the incident. She said more information will come from the district.

North Lake canceled classes May 4-5, and final exams with proceed as normal May 8.

A GoFundMe has been set up to help the Gonzalez family with funeral expenses. A vigil will be held at 7:30 p.m. May 8 at Irving High School, according to the DMN.

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