The Ohio State University police officer who shot dead a man attacking students Monday morning on campus is a graduate of Fairfield High School.
Alan Horujko, 28, is a 2007 graduate of the Butler County high school, where he was a member of the school’s rocket club.
Horujko was praised for his quick action in stopping a suspect on the Columbus campus who was attacking students with a butcher’s knife after trying to run them over with his car.
Horujko’s family told the Journal-News that their son is a Fairfield graduate but that they will not comment publicly until after the investigation into the attack and shooting are completed.
A former Cub Scout in Pack 967, which met at Sacred Heart School in Fairfield, the teen was a standout at Fairfield High School.
“Looks like he was active in drama and computer courses, music, track & field, drama club, foreign language club, film club, computer club, science club throughout his years at Fairfield High School,” said district spokeswoman Gina Gentry-Fletcher.
Fairfield High School band director Jill Wilhelm had Horujko as a clarinet player in the marching band.
“Sounds like he was in the right place at the right time,” said Wilhelm of Monday’s shooting.
“He comes from a wonderful family, and they instilled in him some great values. He was fun-loving in high school and very out-going,” she said.
Fairfield East Elementary Principal Paige Gillespie remembers him when he was a student at Central Elementary, and she was the assistant principal there. “He was a good kid. He was smart.”
Horujko’s mother also worked at the school as a substitute teacher and was involved in the school’s parent-teacher group.
Horujko was praised by Ohio State University officials and campus security officials for his quick actions in gunning down the OSU freshman suspect in the morning attack that left up to 11 students wounded.
The suspect is being identified as Abdul Razak Ali Artan, 18, an Ohio State student who left Somalia with his family in 2007, lived in Pakistan for a while before moving to the United States in 2014, according to NBC news.
During a late afternoon press conference, Ohio Gov. John Kasich thanked the officer who shot the suspect and other first responders for their “amazing” coordination and the speed with which they responded. He said the victims expect a full recovery.
Public safety director Monica Moll said that, on the north campus around 9:52 a.m., the emergency dispatch center got a call that a vehicle struck pedestrians near Watts Hall on West 19th Avenue.
Moll said a car intentionally jumped a curb and hit several pedestrians, then a driver got out of the car and began to stab pedestrians with a knife. Within a minute, an officer responded and immediately engaged the suspect and shot and killed him.
“We believe the threat was ended when the officer engaged the suspect,” Moll said.
The first Buckeye Alert was sent at 9:59 a.m., and by 11 a.m., the shelter in place order had been lifted.
“We are very fortunate an OSU officer was there,” Mull said.
Mull said “we’re very fortunate that an OSUPD officer was there and took quick action. We believe injuries were minimized as a result of that.”
OSUPD Chief Craig Stone: “Our officer was there in less than a minute and ended in less than a minute he ended it after he engaged the suspect and eliminated the threat. The subject is DOA.”
Media question about whether officer warned the suspect before shooting him, Stone said: “As far as I know, he engaged the suspect. Commands were not followed, and the officer did what he had to do to stop the threat.”
OSU medical center director Andy Thomas said they received five injured individuals with stab wounds and injuries from being struck by a car. None of the injuries are considered life-threatening. A fifth victim had been hiding in place and had just arrived at the medical center not long ago. Her injuries are being assessed.
Two people with lacerations were taken to Grant Hospital and two motor vehicle accident victims were taken to Riverside Hospital, making for nine total injured.
OSU officer Horujko was not injured.
Injuries are described as bone and soft-tissue injuries.
Reporters Ed Richter, Eric Schwartzberg and Michael D. Pitman contributed.