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Student Fatally Shot by UC Berkeley Police Identified

By Jeff Shuttleworth (BCN)
Wednesday November 16, 2011 - 12:41:00 PM

A man who was shot by University of California at Berkeley police after he allegedly brandished a gun at the Haas School of Business on Tuesday has died, university officials said today.

The man, identified by the university as 32-year-old Christopher Nathen Elliot Travis, died Tuesday night at Highland Hospital.

"We're very saddened by this new information," university spokeswoman Claire Holmes said.

Travis was an undergraduate transfer student, according to the university. 

UC Berkeley Chancellor Robert Birgeneau and business school dean Rich Lyons told business school students about Travis' death at a special meeting at 8:30 a.m. today, she said. 

Grief counselors are at the school to talk with students, Holmes said. 

She said Travis was from California but she didn't yet know which city he was from. 

The shooting happened around 2:25 p.m. Tuesday in a third-floor computer lab after officers responded to a report of a man with a weapon.  

Birgeneau said a female staff member was taking the elevator up to the fifth floor when a man who was in the elevator with her reached into his backpack and she saw what appeared to be a gun.  

She was "extremely concerned" and notified her supervisor, who called police, said Birgeneau. 

UC Berkeley police Chief Mitch Celaya said police received the call at 2:17 p.m., and by 2:19 p.m. several officers had arrived at the computer lab.  

He said that when the officers made contact with the man, he "pulled a firearm out in a threatening manner." 

They ordered him several times to drop the weapon, and one officer, fearing for his life, opened fire, Celaya said.  

No officers or students were injured.  

Birgeneau said there were at least four other students in the lab when police arrived. 

Celaya said officers yelled at the man to drop his gun numerous times but he failed to comply with their orders. 

Celaya said there is no indication the shooting was related to the Occupy Cal protests happening elsewhere on campus. 

He said the shooting was the first on the campus since a shooting at the Bear's Lair pub in the 1980s.