Arrest has been made in Connection with the TCC Lock Down

By: Andy Alcock, James Buechele Email
By: Andy Alcock, James Buechele Email
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UPDATE
By: Chief Summers to the TCC College Community
June 27, 2014

I wanted to advise the College Community that an arrest has been made in connection with a June 10, 2014 incident involving a person with a handgun on the main campus. The incident resulted in a dangerous-person alert being issued and the campus community being advised to remain indoors. No shots were fired during the 10:30 a.m. incident and the campus was fully open and operational by 1 p.m.

Since then, an ongoing investigation has resulted in the arrest of Melchi Trelenus Thomas, 19, of Tallahassee. Mr. Thomas has been charged with aggravated assault with a firearm and possession of a firearm on school property. The suspect was taken into custody by the U.S. Marshals Service today and was later turned over to the Leon County Detention Facility. A judge has set the suspect’s bond at $11,000 and also issued an order that prohibits Mr. Thomas from coming to the TCC campus.

Mr. Thomas is a current student at TCC. The College judicial process has also begun concerning the incident.

I would like to thank the TCC Community members who played an integral part in this investigation and are committed to helping keep our campus a safe place to learn.


UPDATE by James Buechele
6-11-14

TCC police say they did have a person of interest but could not positively identify the suspect in Tuesday's incident that shutdown the campus.

"You want perfection in something like this," said TCC VP of communications Al Moran. Moran says the school has been looking at ways to improve awareness of a situation like Tuesday's.

"It's unfortunate that this took place but thank goodness it was not a serious situation."

One of the issues Tuesday for TCC was keeping students from coming to class. There's almost a dozen entry ways here on campus including about four just here on Appleyard Drive.

We asked Moran what can the school do to make sure people try to stay away from an area that could be deemed dangerous.

"That's a good question and that's one that we don't have solutions on yet. But we've talked about having patrols back and forth on the perimeter for the purpose of keeping people out."

TCC Police are coming through any video or photo evidence from campus.

"Is it significant specific enough that we can make identifications from there," said TCC police chief Chris Summers.


A gun chase at Tallahassee Community College locked down campus Tuesday.

The lockdown lasted roughly two and a half hours.

But neither the gunman nor the gun were found.

A helicopter crew from the Leon County Sheriff's Office searched for the armed suspect on the TCC campus.

Police from several other area agencies and TCC Police looked on the ground as well.

It all happened as an estimated 3000 to 4000 people on campus were locked down inside buildings.

"Everything got serious when our teacher locked the door," said TCC Student Daniel Collins. "When she locked the door, it was like, oh this is a for real thing," he said.

Investigators say at about 10:30 this morning, a man claimed he was being chased by another man with a gun outside the academic support building.

Other witnesses confirmed the chase.

"As of right now, we're sorting through the details and trying to verify any identities of folks involved," said TCC Police Chief Chris Summers.

Police describe the suspect as a black male.

He was last seen wearing a dark hoodie, blue jean shorts and plaid boxers.

Police also say he has short dreadlocks and gold teeth.

Investigators aren't saying if either the suspect or victim are students or the motive for the gun chase.

During the roughly two and a half hour lockdown, police searched for both the suspect and gun without success.

Investigators believe the suspect left campus.

Some students also did even though they were told to stay inside until the all clear was given.

"The good news is nothing bad happened," said TCC President Jim Murdaugh. "But we will certainly use this as an opportunity to see what improvements we can make," he said.

"We're in class, people would come in late, we'd all kind of freak out look at the door," said TCC Student Robert Kohler. "And the girl by the door would say all the cops are running around," he said.

The all clear was given on the TCC campus just before 1 p.m. Tueday afternoon.

The campus is open for normal business.

Police say they're following leads in the case.


News Release: Tallahassee Community College Police Department
June 10, 2014 - 1:15pm

Tallahassee Community College Police Department has issued an all clear. Main campus will return to normal operations. Classes will resume as scheduled.


By: Andy Alcock
June 10, 2014 - 12:15 pm

Tallahassee, FL - The lock down on campus is expected to end between 1:00-1:30 pm. Police officers are going door to door around the campus to make sure the suspect is not on campus.

The person reported being chased by the armed suspect is not being very cooperative with police. Police believe he knows this armed suspect and that may be the reason they're not getting a full description.

The general consensus we are told from police is that it is likely this armed suspect is no longer on the TCC campus, however they are going to make absolutely sure that this campus is secure before they release everyone and before the lock down is ended.


News Release: Tallahassee Community College Police Department
June 10, 2014 - 11am

Tallahassee Community College Police Department has issued a dangerous person alert. An individual identified as a black male last seen wearing a blue shirt, baseball cap, possible jacket and dreadlock hairstyle was seen with a handgun on campus. Please be advised to stay inside buildings and do not come to campus until further notice.


News Release: Tallahassee Community College
June 10, 2014 - 10:45am

B/M subject reported to be armed with a small handgun last seen near building 3.

B/M 20yoa wearing baseball cap with dreds blue long sleeves maybe blue jacket

secure in place until follow up all clear is communicated


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