ROLLA — Police at a central Missouri university said Thursday that a gunman seen entering and leaving a classroom building had left campus but that students and faculty should stay indoors until the all-clear is given.
No shots were reported during the incident at the Missouri University of Science and Technology in Rolla.
Campus police spokesman Andrew Careaga told The Associated Press that police received a report just before 9 a.m. that a man with a gun ran into McNutt Hall, which houses the school's Department of Mining and Nuclear Engineering. The gunman was later seen leaving the building.
The university immediately sent out an alert warning its roughly 6,000 students and faculty to stay away or, if already on campus, to remain indoors. The campus was still on lockdown and operating under emergency conditions at 10 a.m.
It wasn't the first scare for the technological research and engineering school.
The school was briefly locked down in February 2007 after a student who claimed to have a bomb and threatened "terrorist-type" actions. Sujithkumar Venkatramolla, a civil engineering student from India, walked into Butler-Carlton Civil Engineering Building waving a paper bag and holding a knife, saying he had a bomb and anthrax, police said. He was shot with a stun gun when he refused to drop the knife. The powder in the bag turned out to be powdered sugar.
Venkatramolla pleaded guilty to making a false bomb report, making a terroristic threat, and resisting arrest. He was sentenced to four years in prison, though he is not listed among current offenders in the Missouri Department of Corrections system. A spokesman for the Corrections Department did not immediately return a phone call seeking comment.
The threat initially raised concerns about possible terrorism and forced closure of the campus for an entire day.