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UNLV shooting shakes a city that 6 years ago suffered a mass shooting at a concert

MICHEL MARTIN, HOST:

Police have identified the suspected gunman in Wednesday's shooting at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and two of the three victims. This latest incident shook a city that experienced the deadliest shooting in modern U.S. history just six years ago. Yvette Fernandez from member station KNPR has this update.

YVETTE FERNANDEZ, BYLINE: Students were not a target. Instead, police say the suspect targeted the teaching staff at UNLV. Two of the victims were professors at the university's business school. A third victim's identity is being withheld until next of kin are notified. A fourth shooting victim was a visiting professor being treated at a local hospital with life-threatening injuries. University Police Chief Adam Garcia said the suspect, Anthony Polito, exited Beam Hall about 10 minutes after the initial shots were fired. It was then that two plainclothes university officers confronted him and fired their weapons.

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ADAM GARCIA: These two detectives are heroes. They risked their lives in order to save countless others.

FERNANDEZ: Las Vegas Police Sheriff Kevin McMahill said they learned additional information following a search of Polito's residence in the Las Vegas suburb of Henderson Wednesday night.

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KEVIN MCMAHILL: Importantly, there was a chair with an arrow pointing down to a document. That document was similar to a last will and testament. There was ammunition consistent with the same cartridge cases located at the scene, and there was a Taurus handgun box matching the handgun that he used.

FERNANDEZ: Police also learned the alleged shooter sent 22 letters to several university faculty at both UNLV and East Carolina University in North Carolina. University president Doctor Keith Whitfield said support is available through the community's Resiliency Center. That center was created following the October 1, 2017, mass shooting in Las Vegas, which claimed the lives of 60 people and wounded hundreds. Whitfield says the school and the greater Las Vegas community will be impacted by this week's shooting.

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KEITH WHITFIELD: Incidents like these actually rock us to the bone. This is a day that we're not going to forget. It's a day that's marked in our history from now on.

FERNANDEZ: For NPR News, I'm Yvette Fernandez in Las Vegas.

(SOUNDBITE OF MUSIC) Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.

NPR transcripts are created on a rush deadline by an NPR contractor. This text may not be in its final form and may be updated or revised in the future. Accuracy and availability may vary. The authoritative record of NPR’s programming is the audio record.

Yvette Fernandez