SAU mourns the loss of student in tragic incident

MAGNOLIA -- From Dr. Trey Berry, president: Early this morning, our SAU family lost a student in a tragic, isolated incident, which occurred in the Donald W. Reynolds Campus Community Center parking lot on the campus of Southern Arkansas University. The individuals involved in the incident included students who live off-campus as well as other individuals not believed to be associated with the Institution. This incident was not random, and at no time were other students, faculty, or staff endangered.

Arkansas State Police investigators are on the scene assisting the University Police Department and the Magnolia Police Department with this ongoing investigation.

At approximately 12:31 a.m., the University Police Department reported three students who live off-campus came onto campus and met individuals not believed to be associated with the Institution in the parking lot of the Donald W. Reynolds Campus Community Center. After a brief encounter, shots were
fired. SAU engineering student Joshua Keshun Smith lost his life during the incident, and another student was transported by ambulance to the Magnolia Regional Medical Center and is in stable condition.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Josh’s family as we mourn the loss of his life, and we pray for our other students involved in this devastating event.

The safety of our campus family is always our primary concern. Counseling services are available through the SAU Counseling Center for SAU students, faculty, and staff by contacting 870-235-4911.

We appreciate the work of law enforcement officials who were able to quickly determine that this isolated act poses no broader threat to our campus community. Anyone who believes they have additional information about this incident is urged to contact University Police at 870-235-4100.

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