MTSU Shooting

Law enforcement on the scene following a shooting on MTSU's campus, May 18, 2022

A shooting Wednesday night left one person dead and a second wounded at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro.

The shooting followed a high school graduation ceremony taking place on the college campus. 

The shooting happened around 8:50 p.m. just outside the Murphy Center auditorium, where Murfreesboro's Riverdale High School had just concluded its 2022 commencement ceremony. The event drew hundreds of students, families and community members.

According to a Murfreesboro Police Department news release, both MPD and MTSU Police responded to the scene at approximately 8:51 p.m. Police found two people with gunshot wounds on the north side of the building beside the tennis courts. One of those still-unidentified victims died, while the second was listed in critical but stable condition on Wednesday night. 

At 9:13 p.m., MTSU sent out a social media post and an emergency text message to students.

One witness who said he attended the graduation as a guest reported that he heard gunshots as he walked to his car. 

“As soon as that happened, I immediately got on the phone with police and started running to the direction where the shots originated from,” Dylan Fickes said. “When I arrived on scene, there was a high school-aged kid laying on the ground who appeared to have been shot in the arm and the thigh, and I was just on the phone with dispatch until officers had arrived.”

Another witness who lives across from the Murphy Center reported hearing several gunshots before seeing people running from the area.

“Tonight’s shooting at Middle Tennessee State University (MTSU) is a tragedy for our community,” MPD said in a release. “We mourned with the family who lost a loved one and the victim who was injured.”

As of Thursday morning, law enforcement has identified a person of interest in the shooting, but has not named them publicly. The MTSU campus has reopened, but Riverdale High School is closed on Thursday as a precaution.

Students from nearby Blackman High School were present on the MTSU campus around 7:30 a.m. on Thursday, where they were preparing for their own graduation ceremony. That event is scheduled to take place at the Murphy Center at 7 p.m. Thursday.

While campus was deemed safe and the crime scene was cleared and open, some remnants of last night’s incident remained in the form of scraps of yellow crime-scene tape. Two dark stains were also present on the concrete.

No further information has been released by law enforcement as of this publication.