Local law-enforcement officers have confirmed the name of a man who they say injured at least nine people on the Ohio State University campus this morning by running a car into a group of people, then slashing others with a butcher knife.
Less than a minute after the attack, an OSU police officer shot and killed the man.
The suspect has been indentified as Abdul Razak Ali Artan, who was a student at Ohio State. Records show he lived on the West Side of Columbus. Police and the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office bomb squad currently are searching an apartment there.
Police said the officer who shot and killed Artan is Ohio State Police Officer Alan Horujko, 28, who has been with the police department since January 2015. He wasn’t injured.
Neighbors in the Havenwood Townhome complex on the West Side said police and the sheriff’s office bomb squad have been searching an apartment there since shortly before 11 am., not long after the situation on campus occurred.
Despite rumors of a second suspect, police and campus officials say there was one person involved in the attack.
The attack happened outside of Watts Hall, at West 19th Street west of College Road. Earlier in the morning, the building had been evacuated because of a report of a gas leak. It’s unclear whether that was related to the attack or whether that’s why people were outside at the time of the attack.
OSU President Michael Drake said training by university personnel kept things from being worse.
“We live in an unstable world unfortunately,” he said.
Drake and others spoke outside of Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center.
Wexner Medical Center treated five patients: two were stabbed, two were hit by the car and one had been in hiding after the attack and had just arrived. The last victim’s injuries were being assessed.
Two victims with cuts and stab wounds were taken to OhioHealth Grant Medical Center. Two victims who were struck by the car were taken to OhioHealth Riverside Methodist Hospital.
The attack happened at 9:52 a.m. An “active shooter” alert was sent at 9:55 to the campus community urging people to hide in place.
“There was a guy who crashed his car into a bunch of people and ran out with a knife chasing down people,” the caller told 911 dispatchers.
At 11:30 a.m., the university said the scene was secure and that all classes were canceled on campus. The shelter-in-place order was lifted at 11:14 a.m., but more than a dozen buildings remained closed.
Rep. Joyce Beatty, D-Jefferson Township, who had spoken to President Drake, reported that a car drove into a crowd and most of those affected appeared to have stab wounds.
“The university appears to be secure now, the students appear to be safe,” she said. “What we don’t know is what was the motive.”
Columbus Police, Ohio State police and deputies with the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office deputies rushed to the scene. Students took to social media to find information, and posted video and pictures to Twitter of the scene.
Police were searching the area, and there was intense police and SWAT activity at a garage at West Lane Avenue and Tuttle Park Place on campus, just east of St. John Arena. Officers with long guns and two armored vehicles were seen there before the threat was lifted. Apparently, there were no suspects in the garage but students hiding there.
Mike O’Connell, a senior from Dublin, said he did not hear shots, but got the alerts.
“I just had a class over here an hour ago,” he said. “This is insane. I’ve never seen anything like this.”
Another student said she was in a business class when she received the emergency alert. She said she could see people running outside.
“We’re just staying safe, making sure everyone else is safe,” the sophomore said.
Peter Anderson, chairman of the department of materials science and engineering, said he arrived at Watts Hall after the attack was over.
He said students told him that someone called in a fluorine leak in the building, which has lab facilities. As required during emergencies, the students congregated in the courtyard outside the building.
He said the attacker drove a car into the courtyard. “It’s where we hold our ice cream socials and when something like this happens,”Anderson said.
One victim was struck so hard that the person flew into the air and landed on a hard surface.
“It sounds very fortunate that bsed on what I heard, if this is not a life-threatening injury,” Anderson said.
Anderson said one of his colleagues, professor emeritus William Clark, was slashed in his lower leg by the attacker.
Upper Arlington and Grandview schools were locked down for a short time while police investigated the incident.
The Ohio Department of Transportation closed the ramps from northbound Route 315 at Lane Avenue and southbound 315 at Medical Center Drive. Both have reopened.
High Street at Lane Avenue also was closed to westbound traffic.
Facebook released a Safety Check feature for the incident, allowing people in the area to mark themselves as unharmed.
Check Dispatch.com for more information as it becomes available.