On Thursday, Nov. 20, 2014, 31-year-old attorney and Florida State University graduate Myron Deshawn May began firing a .380 semi-automatic handgun and shot three people, including two students, at 12:25 a.m. at FSU’s Strozier Library, officials said. At least 300 students were present.
Two minutes after opening fire, he was shot and killed during a shootout with police. A text alert sent by the university, warning students of the shooting at 12:30 p.m., read: “*FSU ALERT!* Dangerous Situation! Main campus – Tallahassee. Seek shelter immediately, away from doors and windows.”
A Nov. 21 news release from the Tallahassee Police Department listed the victims as library worker Nathan Scott, 18-year old student Elijah Velez and 21-year-old Farhan Ahmed.
Ahmed, the only one of the victims seriously injured, recovered from the attack but was paralyzed as a result of it. In a letter sent to FSU General Counsel Carolyn Egan on Tuesday, March 28, 2017, Ahmed’s attorney announced his intention to sue the university unless it settled with him for $5 million. In late August, FSU filed to dismiss, stating the school should not be held accountable for the “action of a madman,” according to a report from the Tallhassee Democrat.
NBC reported on Nov. 22 that police said May was in a “state of crisis” before and during the shooting and had expressed the belief that the government was using a “direct energy weapon” to hurt him. His social media featured a series of paranoid posts, and he’d left numerous voicemails for an ex-girlfriend and an acquaintance, Renee Pittman Mitchell, who later released them to the public.
In a March 7 email, FSU News and Digital Communications Director Dennis Schnittker wrote that, following the shooting, there was no significant change in student enrollment and that he was unaware of any related faculty transfers or retirements.
“Public safety is one of Florida State University’s top priorities,” he wrote, explaining he was unable to answer several questions partially because of pending litigation.
FSU police were contacted for comments but none were obtained in time for this story.