A gunshot was fired at the border of the main campus in a March 25 incident of assault and theft, according to a Metropolitan Police Department (MPD) report.
There were no injuries or damages on the scene of the incident, 3900 Reservoir Road NW, according to the MPD report obtained by The Hoya.
A university spokesperson said neither the victim nor the suspect were affiliated with Georgetown. Brianna Burch, a public affairs specialist for MPD, said MPD has identified the incident to be a domestic issue.
“This is a domestic incident between a male and female who are known to each other,” Burch wrote to The Hoya.
Burch said police identified the suspect as Edward Whren, a resident of the District. While carrying out an emergency search warrant for Whren on March 26, one day after the initial incident, MPD officers heard a gunshot and found Whren suffering from a wound to the head. The officers recovered a firearm next to Whren’s arm and preliminarily concluded that his wound was self-inflicted, according to the official police report obtained by The Hoya. Shortly afterward, DC Fire and Emergency Medical Services arrived and pronounced Whren dead.
The victim told police officers that Whren approached her from behind, holding a handgun to her head and saying “Get in the vehicle or I will kill us both.” During a struggle over the weapon, Whren discharged it, stole the victim’s purse and fled.
Students received a notification of the incident through HOYAlert, the university’s emergency alert system, at 4:53 p.m., about 30 minutes after the gunshot went off. The police report indicates that the incident happened between 4:20 p.m. and 4:23 p.m.
The university spokesperson said the Georgetown University Police Department (GUPD) sent out the HOYAlert as soon as they learned about the incident.
Gabe Gerstel (SFS ’23), who lives about a block from where the gunshot occurred, said he and his roommates benefited from receiving the HOYAlert.
“I’m definitely very thankful to have gotten the alert because who knows if we would have been a lot closer to the incident at the time,” Gerstel told The Hoya. “I’m glad that they sent that text, especially like in a situation where you might live near where an incident is happening.”
“Upon becoming aware of the incident from MPD, Georgetown University Police Department issued a HOYAlert advising members of the Georgetown community to avoid the area,” the spokesperson wrote to The Hoya. “An ‘all clear’ HOYAlert was sent as soon as it was determined by GUPD and MPD that there was no ongoing threat to the community.”
Gerstel said he did not hear the gunshot and did not observe any police presence, but he and his roommates remained inside their house out of caution for about 20 minutes after receiving the alert. When they saw parents playing with their children in a nearby park, they decided it was safe to go outside again, according to Gerstel.
Gerstel said he typically feels safe living where he does, though he acknowledged that his identity as a male student might affect this perspective.
“I’m definitely coming from a privileged position of being a guy and living in a house with a bunch of other guys,” Gerstel said. “I don’t have to worry about the same things that a lot of my female and female-presenting friends have to worry about.”
Burch said individuals with information about these incidents should contact MPD by calling 202-727-9099 or by texting 50411.
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