Morgan State University is urging students to stay away from Thurgood Marshall Hall amid an active shooter situation. Photo courtesy of Morgan State University/Flickr
Oct. 3 (UPI) -- Authorities in Baltimore were searching for at least one gunman early Wednesday after five people were wounded in a shooting near Morgan State University that prompted authorities to order people to avoid the campus and those in the area to shelter in place.
Baltimore Police Commissioner Richard Worley identified the victims during an early Wednesday press conference as four men and a woman between the ages of 18 and 22. All but one were students at the historically Black university.
They are believed to have suffered non-life-threatening gunshot wounds, he said.
"We have to stop saying, 'Not one more,'" Baltimore Mayor Brandon Scott told reporters during the press conference in an appeal for a national effort to curb gun violence in the country.
"There are things that can be done, particularly at the level of Congress, that can help stop the next shooting on a campus, at a church, at a supermarket from happening.
"When is enough going to be enough? When will the sanctity of American lives, and sanctity of American college students and students to get their education outweigh American guns?"
Morgan State University police on routine patrol responded to the sound of gunfire at around 9:25 p.m. and found multiple gunshot victims at the scene, Worley said.
Shattered windows signaled to the officers that they were in the midst of an active shooter situation, and an emergency response was activated, the commissioner said, stating the area was cordoned off and a command center was established.
Baltimore Police Department SWAT along with the assistance of local, state and regional law enforcement cleared the buildings, but have yet to make an arrest in connection to the shooting.
"We did not locate the suspect at this time," he said.
Though the scene remains active, authorities have lifted the shelter-in-place order as it is no longer considered an active shooter situation.
The Baltimore Police Department had earlier tweeted that there was an "an active shooter situation in the 1700 block on Argonne Drive," and that "multiple victims" were involved, with Morgan State University publishing an alert on its website and to social media warning of "shots being fired on or near campus."
"Please stay clear of the area surrounding Thurgood Marshall Hall and the Murphy Center and shelter in place," it said.
The shooting happened as students were exiting the coronation ceremony of Mr. and Mrs. Morgan State University as part of homecoming week on campus.
Morgan State University President David Wilson said he was in attendance of the "beautiful event," and that following the violence he escorted students and parents to safety.
Classes have been canceled for Wednesday and officials will be reassessing further homecoming events, he said.
Concerned family members are being asked by authorities to report to the Safeway parking lot at 4401 Harford Road where a Baltimore police officer is located.
Special agents with the Baltimore Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were responding, the federal agency said.
A public historically Black university, Morgan State has a student body of some 9,100 people, according to its website.