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Student Heard Shooting From The Next Classroom

Rachael McDonald

Thursday, on the 4th day of fall term, a 26-year old man opened fire in a classroom at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg. The Douglas County Sheriff says 10 people were killed, 7 wounded. The shooter was killed by law enforcement.

17-year-old Sarah Cobb was in her writing 121 class in Snyder Hall Thursday morning when she heard a loud bang from the room next door. She looked out the window.
Cobb: "There was a couple girls sprinting away from the building and I knew immediately something was wrong we need to get out of this building. And then I heard the second and third and I let the teacher know, we need to leave. So she opened the door and everyone got out and I heard all this screaming and stuff and once I had gotten out the door I was halfway across the campus already."

Credit Rachael McDonald
Sarah Cobb speaks with reporters at the Douglas County Fairgrounds.

Cobb says she sprinted to the student union. The school went into lockdown for about an hour.
She had left her phone and books in the classroom.
Cobb: "When I was in lockdown I was freaking out. I didn’t know what to think. I didn’t know what to do. I had no way to contact my parents, let them know I was all right. "

Students, teachers and staff from Umpqua Community College were eventually taken to the Douglas County Fairgrounds where they spoke with police and grief councilors.  

U.C.C. President Rita Cavin spoke with reporters Thursday afternoon.

Cavin: "Today was the saddest day in the history of the college. The college just celebrated its 50th anniversary recently and this was a tragedy. Our hearts and prayers go out to the families and to the staff who witnessed this atrocity. This is a real crisis situation."

Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlon praised first responder.

Hanlon: "The law enforcement investigation into the shooter and into his motivation is ongoing. We are not ready at this time to make any comments about him."

Umpqua Community College is closed and classes are cancelled until Monday.


Rachael McDonald is KLCC’s former News Director. Rachael has a BA in English from the University of Oregon. She started out in public radio as a newsroom volunteer at KLCC in 2000. After reporting for the Northwest News Network and KAZU, Rachael returned to KLCC in 2007 as Morning Edition host and a general assignment reporter covering politics, the environment, education, and the arts. She was hired as KLCC News Director in 2018. Rachael departed KLCC in June, 2022.
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