Attacker shot, killed by OSU police officer

By Emily Williams, Managing Editor

Eleven people were injured Monday morning at Ohio State University after a student ran into pedestrians with his vehicle before exiting the car and cutting victims with a butcher knife.

The attacker, 18-year-old Abdul Razak Ali Artan, was shot and killed by police at the scene.

According to a statement from the Ohio State University Police and local law enforcement, the injuries sustained by the victims include stab wounds and injuries from impact with the vehicle. Although a shelter-in-place notification on campus was lifted by 11 a.m., classes were canceled for the rest of the day, said Ohio State Director of Public Safety Monica Mull in a press conference.

At around 9:55 a.m., said Mull, the university issued an alert that an active shooter was near Watts Hall. Although the initial alert referred to the attacker as a shooter, that information was false. Law enforcement concluded that there was no other threat of violence at the crime scene or elsewhere on campus after Artan was killed, said Mull.

Victims were taken to the Ohio State Wexner Medical Center, Grant Medical Center and Riverside Methodist Hospital. None of the victims’ injuries were life-threatening said Andrew Thomas, chief medical officer, in a press conference.

“I want to give our thoughts and prayers and hopes and wishes for a speedy recovery for all those who were injured,” said OSU president Michael Drake in a press conference Monday afternoon. “We prepare for situations like this, but always hope never to have one.”

Drake commended the university’s police for their quick response. Artan was shot by Ohio State police officer Alan Horujko within a minute of when the attack began.

Artan, who university officials say was a permanent United States resident from Somalia, graduated from Columbus State Community College in May before attending Ohio State this semester for logistics management. 

In an August issue of The Lantern, Ohio State’s student newspaper, Artan was interviewed for “Humans of Ohio State,” a feature in the paper’s Arts & Life section. In the article, Artan shared his concerns about praying Muslim prayers in public. At Columbus State Community College, he said, there were prayer rooms which he could use throughout the day, but at Ohio State he wasn’t sure where to pray.

“I wanted to pray in the open, but I was scared with everything going on in the media. I’m a Muslim, it’s not what the media portrays me to be,” Artan told The Lantern. “If people look at me, a Muslim praying, I don’t know what they’re going to think, what’s going to happen.”