Shots fired near Florida university campus as students are warned to shelter

Authorities alerted Florida Gulf Coast University students of the shooting in nearby Gulf Coast Town Center on Wednesday

Bevan Hurley
Wednesday 16 August 2023 20:33 BST
Police on the scene of a shooting in Gulf Coast Town Center, Florida, on Wednesday morning
Police on the scene of a shooting in Gulf Coast Town Center, Florida, on Wednesday morning (NBC2)

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Louise Thomas

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Students at a Florida university were warned to shelter in place after shots were fired at the nearby Gulf Coast Town Center shopping mall on Wednesday morning.

Florida Gulf Coast University sent an alert to students after shots were reported at a construction site at the mall 15 miles (24kms) south of downtown Fort Myers at around 11.15am.

Lee County Sheriff’s Office deputies responded to the shooting, and later confirmed that no shoppers had been hurt.

They are searching for the occupants of two cars who fled the scene.

The Florida Gulf Coast University police department posted an update at around 1.30pm to say there was no active threat and there had been no danger to students on its main campus.

The university said on social media that an alert about an active shooter on campus was sent out in error.

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said in a social media post that the shooting appeared to have been an isolated altercation between two vehicles that had since fled.

He said no businesses had been affected, but to expect an increased law enforcement presence in the area.

Florida Gulf Coast University had an enrollment of 16,000 students in 2022.

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