A Southern Illinois University student died after she and three other people were shot early Sunday during a party near the school's campus, police said.
SIU freshman Keeshanna Jackson was pronounced dead at a hospital after being shot about 3 a.m. Sunday in Carbondale just north of the university's campus.
Three other gunshot victims came into the emergency room at Memorial Hospital of Carbondale with gunshot wounds as police were investigating Jackson's shooting. Police said those three victims had suffered non-life-threatening wounds and came on their own to the ER.
The shooting near the SIU campus came just after the first week of fall semester classes, The Southern Illinoisan reported.
The school's chancellor, Austin Lane, said in a statement that the campus community was “heartbroken" by Jackson's death.
“We are heartbroken to lose a member of the Saluki family and extend our deepest condolences to her family and friends. Carbondale Police Department notified us of the incident about 3:15 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 22, and we are assisting CPD as it carries out its investigation," Lane said in a statement. "We understand this comes as a shock to many of our students. As we mourn this loss in our community, we will keep the student’s family and friends in our thoughts.”
The school is offering counselling services for students, according to a press release.
Javiana Boyd attended a candlelight vigil on Sunday night for Jackson, who was her cousin. She said Jackson decided at the last minute to enroll at SIU and had driven her own U-Haul down from Chicago.
Boyd, who's also a freshman at SIU, said Jackson could make anyone laugh and she wanted to do everyone’s nails.
“She would bring joy in your life everyday just by making you smile," she said.
The shooting is being investigated by the Carbondale Police Department.
A message seeking an update on that investigation was left Monday morning for the department.