Five People Shot, One Killed, After Shooting On U Of I Campus

September 25, 2016
The scene in the 300 block of East Green Street just before 5 am Sunday.

The scene in the 300 block of East Green Street just before 5 am Sunday.

Sean Neumann/Illinois Public Media

Authorities say five people were shot, one of them fatally, in two separate overnight shootings within minutes of each other overnight on the University of Illinois campus. Police say in a news release that they believe the two shootings may be related. They say the first apparently stemmed from an argument at an apartment party shortly after midnight.

It escalated into a fight outside in which shots were fired, striking four people. The incident occured on the 300 block of East

One of the four, George Korchev of Mundelein, was killed. Police say he wasn't involved in the fight and happened to be walking by when the shots were fired. The other three were taken to a hospital for treatment of what police called non-critical gunshot wounds.

University of Illinois spokeswoman Robin Kaler says Korchev was not a student.

Less than half an hour later, police received a report of another shooting. Officers found a victim, who was taken to a hospital and treated for a non-critical wound.

Police are searching for a suspect or suspects in the shootings and for the driver of a vehicle that struck someone who was running away from the gunfire at the first scene. That person's injuries were minor.

In a mass e-mail to campus, University of Illinois Chief of Police Jeff Christensen said police continue to look for those involved, as well as the driver of the vehicle. The Champaign Police Department is leading the investigation, and the University of Illinois Police Department, Champaign County Sheriff’s Department and Champaign County Coroner are assisting to process the scene, review security camera footage and interview potential witnesses.

Anyone who was at the party or who may have witnessed any of these incidents is urged to contact the Champaign Police Investigations Division at police@champaignil.gov or 217-351-4545.

Champaign Mayor Deb Feinen posted a message on Twitter Sunday morning:

"On behalf of the City of Champaign, my thoughts and prayers go out to the family of George Korchev, and the other innocent victims of the tragic shootings earlier this morning," she said. "This type of senseless gun violence is unacceptable in our community. The Champaign Police Department, University of Illinois Police Department, and other local law enforcement agencies are aggressively pursuing all leads in this ongoing investigation." 

Story source: AP