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Delaware State University shooting victim identified, classes resume Tuesday

Delaware State University student describes campus as a "ghost town" on Monday after shooting
Delaware State University student describes campus as a "ghost town" on Monday after shooting 01:53

DOVER, Del. (CBS) -- Police are investigating the shooting death of an 18-year-old on Delaware State University's campus early Sunday morning, and now a reward is being offered for information leading to an arrest in the case. Classes were canceled on Monday, but they will resume on Tuesday, a university spokesperson said. 

"You never want to get the phone call as a public safety professional that a tragedy like this occurred especially at an educational institution," City of Dover Chief of Police Thomas Johnson, Jr. said.

Monday morning, Dover Police identified the victim as Camay Mitchell De Silva, of Wilmington, Delaware, and said the department is still looking for leads that could help investigators identify a suspect in her death.

"The campus is just completely a ghost town," senior Ashley Spence said on Monday.

On Sunday, April 21, Dover PD said officers were notified of a shooting near the campus' Warren Franklin Residential Hall around 1:40 a.m. At the scene, they located an 18-year-old woman, later identified as De Silva, who had been shot in the upper body.

"We've determined she has no involvement in any altercation if there was any. She was just an innocent bystander," Master Corporal Ryan Schmid, with the City of Dover Police Department, said.

The young woman was taken to Bayhealth Hospital, Kent Campus, where she died from her injuries. Police said she was not a student at the university. The university told CBS News Philadelphia De Silva was enrolled at Morgan State University in Baltimore. 

"It really could've been any one of us on campus," Shaniya Durant, a sophomore at DSU, said.

DSU officials said De Silva and possibly another woman were visiting someone on campus at the time of the shooting. 

The gunman is still at large and was last seen heading toward College Road, DSU officials said. 

On Monday, police have yet to provide a description of the shooter but emphasized detectives are working tirelessly and in conjunction with university police in the investigation. They added that patrols have been stepped up on and around campus. 

Johnson said the department's thoughts are with the victim's family. He adds the shooting is "not something that we're used to seeing" at DSU.

"Put the guns down. I don't care what your issue is, what your problem is, whatever thing that's troubling you, the firearm is not the way to solve the problem. It's not a solution and innocent people get hurt and the community can't tolerate this anymore," Johnson said.

National Nonprofit, which was formed following the mass school shooting in Uvalde, Texas, is offering a reward of up to $1,000 for information that leads to an arrest.

"The only thing that we can release right now is that something happened in the area of that residence hall which led to shots being fired," Schmid said on Sunday. "We don't believe the 18-year-old was involved in anything and it seems like unfortunately she was just caught, for a lack of a better term, in the crossfire."

Students tell CBS News Philadelphia it's Spring Fling Week and many people were outside when the shooting happened.

"They just canceled everything that we had going on for the week," Spence added.

DSU did not make anyone available for an interview on Monday.

The school plans to hold a forum on Tuesday to share the latest updates with students, faculty and parents.

"I hope that they're sitting in there really discussing how to move forward because this was absolutely unnecessary tragedy," Durant said.

DSU parent Deirdre Foreman said she learned about the shooting through a text from the school. She came to campus to check on her son who is a senior at the university.

"We were just talking about back when we were in college, how things were not like that in terms of gun violence. And nowadays it's just so out of control," Foreman said. 

Sophomore student Jaiden Palmer said she believes the university needs to upgrade its security.

"It's easily accessible for people to jump gates. It's easily accessible for you to say you're somebody you're not and it's easy for you to get in," Palmer said. "My heart and prayers go out to the girl's family."

"The DSU Police Department and staff will continue to take all necessary actions to ensure the health and well-being of our campus community," Delaware State University said in a statement posted on the Dover PD's website. "Counseling services are available in the Tubman Laws Hall housing office. The campus is closed today, events have been canceled, and police patrols have been increased. No visitation will be permitted today."

In a statement posted on Instagram, the Delaware State University Student Government Association called the shooting "tragic" and urged the rest of the campus community to stay safe.

"As your Student Government Association, we stand united in supporting one another through this difficult time. Let us come together to offer comfort, strength, and solidarity to those affected by this tragedy," the post said.

Delaware State University President Tony Allen said in a letter to the university community resident assistants "acted with leadership and authority to diffuse a tense situation" and reiterated that university police are working with Dover Police Department to "bring the suspects to justice." 

Allen added that the school is providing mental health services "across the campus community, including our external and virtual resources." The university will have a forum Tuesday to "share any updates and to remember a young person gone too soon," he wrote.

Police said no other injuries were reported in connection with the shooting. The FBI is currently assisting the Dover Police Department in their investigation. 

Anyone with information is asked to contact the Dover Police Department at (302) 736-7130 or submit tips through Delaware Crime Stoppers at 800-TIP-3333 or online at You can also contact DSUPD at (302) 857-791.

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