News

UNCC police chief: 'Our officers definitely saved lives'

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — The shooting at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte was the kind of emergency that no one wants to go through, but it's one that UNCC police and campus staff have trained for over the years.

[Source: UNCC shooting victim jumped on gunman to save others]

The emergency response seen Tuesday when officials said Trystan Andrew Terrell, 22, opened fire on students during the last day of classes, killing two people and wounding four others, was all that training paying off.

[CLICK HERE for Tuesday's minute-by-minute coverage of the shooting at UNCC]

[Who is Trystan Terrell? Suspect charged in deadly UNC Charlotte shooting]

Chopper 9 Skyzoom was overhead minutes after the shooting as officers rushed toward the shooter and sounds of screaming students.

>> Reading this story in our app? The new "Follow the Lead" feature allows you to tap the blue tag indicated with a '+' to subscribe to alerts on the very latest breaking news updates surrounding the UNCC campus shooting.

UNCC police Chief Jeff Baker told Channel 9 there were 14 officers about to go over their security plan for a concert at the university later that day when the call came in and everyone on the force darted to the Kennedy building.

[ALSO READ: UNC Charlotte officers train breaching doors in emergency situations]

"I want to say it was minutes it seemed. I came in behind them. We were actually in a roll call for an event that was going on on campus. We had just broken from that. We were en route to that, so when we heard this call come out we all converged almost immediately," said Baker.

[RELATED: First of UNCC shooting victims identified; recovering after surgery]

According to Baker, one of his officers was able to quickly disarm Terrell and take him down.

“Our officers definitely saved lives,” Baker said. “There’s no doubt about that.”

Baker said there's no question that officers saved lives and attributes a big part of that to the training they've been working on for years.

“What I'm most proud of is the response,” CMPD Chief Kerr Putney said. “The training worked. It was immediate. They were there quickly.”

In addition to the officers’ training, the university invested in technology that made it possible to send a campus-wide warning almost immediately on Twitter.