A longtime employee of Wayne Community College died Monday morning after a shooting on the campus in Goldsboro, North Carolina, authorities confirmed. Police are still searching for the suspect, who they believe has left the area surrounding the school.
Officials are on the hunt for Kenneth Stanscil, 20, reportedly a former student at the college and alleged gunman who they believe entered a building on campus shortly after it opened around 8:10 a.m. EST. He then fatally shot the employee with his long gun, according to Tara Humphries, the college's public information officer. She identified the victim during a morning press conference as Ron Lane, a print shop operator who worked at the college for 18 years. Stanscil formerly was a work-study student who had been employed in Lane's shop during the 2014 fall semester, Humphries said during an afternoon news conference.
The shooting occurred in the general area of the college's library on the third floor of the WLC building, college President Kay Albertson added.
Authorities described the suspect as a white male with a tattoo over his left eye. He was reportedly wearing a blue jacket with white pants.
Students and employees evacuated the campus, Humphries said. Albertson commended faculty and students for responding to safety protocol efficiently and effectively.
The college is an open-door campus, Albertson said. It remains unclear how Stanscil was able to walk into the building carrying the long gun.
"We have no reason to believe he is on campus," said Major Tom Effler of the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office confirmed during the morning press conference
Authorities deployed tear gas in an area of the school grounds where they thought the suspect was hiding, Effler added. Police have set up a perimeter around the campus as they actively search for Stanscil. They believe the shooting was an isolated incident.
"We do believe the suspect has left the area at this time," Wayne County Sheriff Larry Pierce said on Monday afternoon. Police are searching North Carolina for him, and will expand their hunt into other states if necessary. They currently have a photograph of Stanscil, but said they won't release an image of him until they get an updated picture.
Police are unsure of the gunman's motive at this time.
The college, where about 4,000 students are enrolled, is 50 miles southeast of Raleigh. Administrators are offering immediate counseling to anyone in need.
"We want to reassure our students that this was an isolated incident," Humphries said. All of the college's classes and activities were cancelled for the remainder of Monday. The campus will reopen on Tuesday with an extra police presence "so everyone feels safe," she added.
This is a breaking news story. Check back for updates.