Purdue President Mitch Daniels returns to campus after fatal shooting
Purdue President Mitch Daniels returned to campus Wednesday after curtailing an overseas trip due to Tuesday's fatal shooting.
Daniels was in Colombia on a fact-finding mission on behalf of the university. He cut the educational mission short by a day-and-a-half to get back to campus and spend time with students and get briefed on exactly what happened.
"I thought it was the only right call. I asked a little advice and those folks agreed. I just think that my place was here. I feel badly for those who planned a very important trip. But we got a lot of what we went down there for done before this event happened," he told Eyewitness News.
Daniels said it was important for him to be on campus.
"I just thought I would come back here and be with as many students as I can and obviously begin the process of post-morteming this event, make sure we handled it as well as we could," he said.
Purdue came under criticism from students during Tuesday's shooting incident. Some said the university did not put out enough alerts about what was going on.
"Obviously, some are going to handle it better on an individual level than others. And if some didn't, they should have known better and maybe publicizing their bad judgement will help somebody handle it better next time. God forbid there's a next time," Daniels said. "It's stunning. Let's face it. We live in a violent society and these tragedies happen. We're probably too numb to them sometimes. But there's something about it happening in a place of learning on a college campus; obviously when it happens to a young person, a brilliant young person. These things make it hit us harder."
Andrew Boldt, 21, died in the shooting. Police say the suspect, 23-year-old Cody Cousins, targeted Boldt for unknown reasons. Cousins is due in court Thursday.