College student hears gunfire and finds friend fatally shot on campus, reports say

A student rushed to help when gunfire erupted on the Kennesaw State University campus, only to realize the victim was his friend, news outlets report.

The young woman was shot and killed during a dispute Saturday, May 18, outside the Austin Residence Complex dorm at the Atlanta-area university, according to the Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

The suspect, Samuel Harris, ran and was on the loose a short time after the shooting, investigators said. He was later arrested on charges of murder, aggravated assault and possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime.

Harris doesn’t attend the university, KSU officials said.

Family members identified the victim as 21-year-old Alasia Franklin, WXIA reported.

Senior student Anthony Harrison recalled being “completely horrified” by what he saw after he was jolted awake by the sound of gunshots and rushed outside.

“I couldn’t even recognize the way she looked,” Harrison told WAGA through tears. “I couldn’t recognize the way she looked, man. I stood right over her as I was on the phone (with 911).”

Harrison is vice president of the Student Government Association and served alongside Franklin, the station reported.

“That’s something that’s going to be with me for a long, long, long time,” he told WAGA.

At about 4 p.m., KSU police sent out a shelter-in-place alert after a report of an armed intruder on campus, officials said. The all-clear was given around 4:45 p.m. after the accused shooter, later identified as Harris, was arrested by police.

“Our thoughts and deepest sympathies are with the victim’s family and friends during this incredibly difficult time,” KSU President Kathy S. Schwaig said in a statement.

Franklin and Harris both attended Cairo High School in Cairo, a city more than 230 miles away near the Georgia-Florida line, according to KSU student newspaper The Sentinel.

The rising junior was an integrated health sciences major with a minor in medical sociology, the newspaper reported. In addition to serving on SGA, Franklin was also a founding member of the Integrated Health Science Club at the university.

Franklin was also a member of KSU’s affiliate chapter of the National Council of Negro Women, according a post on the organization’s Facebook page.

Her father, Bobby Franklin, told WXIA his daughter had dreams of becoming a nurse practitioner.

“I’m at a loss for words,” he told the station. “I feel like my heart has been ripped out of my chest.”

Harrison remembered his friend as someone who was “always outgoing and very easy to talk to,” WSB-TV reported.

“I can’t express how sorry I am that you guys lost her,” he said in a message to Franlkin’s family. “I wish I could have done more to help.”

Kennesaw is about a 30-mile drive northwest from downtown Atlanta.

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