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Springboro grad accused in Purdue shooting


A Purdue University senior from Wisconsin is dead and another student, a 2008 Springboro High School graduate, is in custody on suspicion of murder following a shooting on the campus in West LaFayette, Ind., according to officials.

The victim was identified as Andrew F. Boldt, 21, a senior from West Bend, Wis., who was a teaching assistant, Purdue University Police Chief John Cox said in a news conference at 6 p.m. Tuesday.

The suspect, who appeared to have targeted Boldt, was identified as Cody M. Cousins, 23, a student in the college of engineering at Purdue, Cox said. He has been booked into the Tippecanoe County Jail on suspicion of murder, according to jail records. Records show Cousins is from Centerville, Ohio and Warsaw, Ind., Cox said.

The gunman walked into a basement classroom of the Electrical Engineering building around noon while a class was going on, school and law enforcement officials told a news conference.

The attacker did not appear to be randomly targeting students, officials said.

“The suspect came into the building, walked to the classroom, shot the individual and walked out,” said school spokesman Greg McClure in an earlier news conference. He then walked outside and surrendered to police.

“This is not your typical active shooter. This appears to be an isolated and intentional act,” Cox said in the evening news conference.

Police said there was no argument or fight before the shooting. The attacker did not appear to be randomly targeting students, officials said.

“The suspect came into the building, walked to the classroom, shot the individual and walked out,” said school spokesman Greg McClure in an earlier news conference. He then walked outside and surrendered to police.

“This is not your typical active shooter. This appears to be an isolated and intentional act,” Cox said in the evening news conference.

Police said there was no argument or fight before the shooting. Classes were cancelled for the rest of Tuesday and for Wednesday, officials said.

Ron Malone, vice president of the Springboro board of education and former Springboro High School principal, said he recalls Cousins as a bright student.

“If my memory serves me correctly, he was in the information technology program and is an individual that was very bright, very strong in computers,” Malone said.

Former classmates were shocked by the allegations.

“I remember he was a smart kid and a nice guy. This incident is very shocking news for me, ” said Kayvon Samavati of Fairborn, a former school classmate.

Added Sydney Albrecht of Dayton, who went to middle school with Cousins, “Oh my God…he was one of the smartest guys I knew.”

Melissa Spirek, chairwoman and professor of communication at Wright State University said the wife of her godson, Andrew Zeller, a Purdue graduate assistant, was in the building where the shooting took place.

Spirek received word that Emmy Zeller, an assistant in Purdue’s nanotechnology center, was not harmed. Spirek said her heart goes out to the families, students, faculty and staff.

“Heartbreak mentally to have a student be the shooter… heartbreak for both families in so many ways,” she said.

Indiana State Police were working with Purdue University Police to process the crime scene, Cox said.

West Lafayette police executed a search warrant at Cousins’ home in West Lafayette, a spokesman for the police department said in the news conference. Police have had prior contact with Cousins in an alcohol-related arrest, the spokesman said.

Kirk Choquette, a 20-year-old sophomore, said he was walking from the bathroom to his class on the first floor of the engineering building when he heard gunshots.

“Initially I didn’t think they were gunshots,” he said. “I thought someone was just banging on the wall on the wall … then I heard cops yell, ‘Get down.’”

Shortly after he got to his class, he said, police told students to leave the building.

While standing outside, Choquette said, he and a friend saw a person leave the building with what appeared to be blood on his hands.

Cousins was scheduled for a court hearing at 2:30 p.m. local time Wednesday, according to jail records.

Staff Writers Kelli Wynn, J. Frazier Smith and James Brown contributed to this report.


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