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Letter From President Broderick

Dear Campus Community,

While we do not yet know all the details of yesterday morning's off-campus shooting, we do know the Old Dominion University community lost a bright and talented student and another student is recovering in the hospital.

Our thoughts and prayers go out to the family of Christopher S. Cummings, a junior criminal justice major from Northern Virginia. By all accounts, Christopher was a friendly and popular student and a member of Theta Chi Fraternity. Words cannot express our grief at the senseless loss of such a bright, young man.

Members of the university community have been in touch with the Cummings family and the university wishes to continue to provide support for Christopher's friends, classmates and faculty. The Counseling Center staff is available to assist any student, faculty or staff members who are having difficulty.

Please take a moment to reach out to your friends, classmates and colleagues and show concern during this time. ODU Police and other university officials are working with Norfolk Police to assist in their investigation in this  crime.

While I understand the university community's anger over this terrible act and frustration at the few details released, please understand that police investigations take time. We have and will continue to update the campus with information as soon as we receive it from police.

Additionally, if anyone has any information, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant, please call police immediately. That piece of information could help identify the individual or individuals responsible for this crime.

As you know, the university has been working with a national security consultant and we are putting into place her recommendations. We have hired additional officers, enhanced the lighting in the garages, and installed more "blue light" emergency phones. Work is underway on significantly increased use of video surveillance and a campus-wide review of lighting. We will also continue to urge city officials and landlords on additional safety measures for the neighborhood where this and other crimes occurred this semester.

In the coming days, I will continue to update the campus on university and police efforts. In the meantime, I ask that each of us offers solace and support to other members of our ODU community as we struggle to comprehend this senseless act.


John R. Broderick


This article was posted on: June 11, 2011

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Room 100 Koch Hall Norfolk, Virginia 23529-0018
Telephone: 757-683-3114

Old Dominion University is an equal opportunity, affirmative action institution.