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Police Shoot Armed Man In Building At UC Berkeley

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(credit: ThinkStock)

(credit: ThinkStock)

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BERKELEY (AP) — A man with a gun was shot by police Tuesday inside the business school at the University of California, Berkeley, after hundreds of students and anti-Wall Street activists descended on the campus for a day of protests.

The shooting occurred at the Haas School of Business on the east side of campus, less than a half-mile away from the protest site.

Ute Frey, a spokeswoman for the university, said officials did not yet know whether the suspect was part of the Occupy Cal movement.

“I just hope it wasn’t from the protest or the movement, because that’s not what the movement is about,” said Sadia Saif, a 19-year-old UC Berkeley sophomore.

University officials said a female staff member saw a man carrying what appeared to be a gun in an elevator at the business school after 2 p.m. The staff member called police at 2:17 p.m., saying she saw the man remove the gun from a backpack.

Police said they arrived at 2:19 p.m. and had to locate the suspect in the building. Officers found the suspect in a third-floor computer room where there were at least four students, university officials said.

The suspect raised the gun and was shot by an officer at about 2:22 p.m, roughly five minutes after the initial call, according to the school. At the time, four students were between the officer and the suspect, UC Chancellor Robert Birgeneau said at an afternoon news conference.

None of the students was hurt. No further details about the shooting were immediately released.

The condition of the suspect was not immediately known.

Shortly before 3 p.m., the university issued a campus alert about the shooting to students, saying “everything was under control.” Another at 3:03 p.m. said one suspect was in custody.

It was the first shooting since the 1980s on the campus, police said.

“This is extraordinarily upsetting,” Birgeneau said.

The officer involved was placed on paid administrative leave, as is standard procedure in officer-involved shootings.

The shooting occurred as anti-Wall Street activists were preparing another attempt to establish an Occupy Cal camp after a failed effort last week led to dozens of arrests.

ReFund California, a coalition of student groups and university employee unions, called for a campus strike, and protesters planned a rally and march to protest banks and budget cuts to higher education.

More than 1,000 students, campus employees, faculty and other demonstrators filled an outdoor plaza after many took part in morning teach-ins.

(Copyright 2011 The Associated Press.)

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