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Georgia College maintains classes after arrest of reported gunman

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January 22, 2010

(MILLEDGEVILLE) — Georgia College & State University resumed its normal class schedule and operations Friday morning after the report of a man on campus with a gun temporarily closed the university.

Students, faculty and staff were alerted at 4:54 a.m. via the university’s emergency alert system of possible danger after a 911 call reported a man with a gun in the Napier Hall parking lot was threatening students.

The alert instructed students to remain inside behind locked doors. 

At 5:36 a.m., a second alert reported police had made an arrest and the campus was clear for normal activities.  No one was injured.

Holden Furner, 20, of Gainesville, Ga., who is not a Georgia College student, was arrested and charged with three felony counts of terroristic threats, underage possession of alcohol and misdemeanor obstruction of an officer. 

He reportedly used his cell phone to threaten three Georgia College students from the parking lot of Napier Hall and told them he had a gun.

“This appears to be an isolated incident between the man and an ex-girlfriend,” said Dave Groseclose, Assistant Vice President for Public Safety. “We responded quickly and efficiently to ensure the safety of the threatened students and the entire campus.”

Milledgeville police received the initial 911 call and alerted campus police. Officers did not locate the reported gunman in the Napier Hall parking lot but followed him through the Centennial Center area and back toward the Wellness Depot.

Milledgeville Sgt. Michael Harris called the reported gunman on his cell phone to try to convince him to turn himself in.

“But when he came out of the woods and saw us waiting for him, he backpedalled,” Harris said. “We arrested him on the railroad tracks between Greene and Tattnall streets after a brief struggle.”

Georgia College contracted with Connect ED emergency alert system in the wake of the Virginia Tech shootings in 2007. The system transmits brief urgent messages during campus emergencies.  

“Our emergency alert system worked smoothly to protect our students and campus while officers located the reported gunman and arrested him,” Groseclose said. “The second alert, less than an hour later reporting the arrest, was a welcome one.”

ABOUT GEORGIA COLLEGE: Georgia College, the state’s designated Public Liberal Arts University, combines the educational experience expected at esteemed private liberal arts colleges with the affordability of public higher education. Its four colleges – arts and sciences, business, education and health sciences – provide 6,600 undergraduate and graduate students with an exceptional learning environment that extends beyond the classroom, with hands-on involvement with faculty research, community service, study abroad and myriad internships.

Founded in 1889, Georgia College boasts one of the most beautiful campuses in the nation with Corinthian columns fronting red brick buildings and wide open green spaces. Georgia College also offers graduate education at the historic Jefferson building in downtown Macon, at Robins Air Force Base and online.

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