UAF: Gunman arrested with help from Fort Wainwright police, ID’d as soldier
Last updated at 6:05 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 30
The University of Alaska Fairbanks announced that a suspect was taken into custody early Sunday morning.
Fort Wainwright police stopped a vehicle matching the suspect vehicle’s description around 3:30 a.m.on base, according to UAF spokeswoman Marmian Grimes.
“UAF police questioned the occupants of the vehicle and several of them indicated that the detained individual was the person who shot the gun,” her statement said. “The suspect subsequently admitted to threatening people with a gun and firing the gun.”
Police charged the suspect, identified as Fort Wainwright soldier Dijon Lamar Martin, with two counts of third-degree assault, according to Grimes. The vehicle belonged to Martin, who was a passenger in the car at the time of his arrest. It was impounded, according to Grimes. Martin was arraigned Sunday, she said.
She said the incident began at a nearby intersection, where a student got into a verbal argument with Martin and the others in the car.
“That student then walked to a friend’s house at Cutler [Apartments] and the car followed him there,” Grimes said. “He went inside and actually another person in the apartment came out and then Martin got into an altercation with that person and was reportedly waving a gun around and eventually fired a shot into the ground.”
Martin and the three others, who were also identified as Fort Wainwright soldiers, fled in Martin’s car. Calls reporting the shooting came in around 11 p.m., according to Grimes. The campus was on lockdown for about an hour while UAF and Fairbanks police searched for the suspects.
Grimes said all local law enforcement, including Alaska State Troopers and Fort Wainwright police, were given information about the incident and suspect vehicle.
“I want to thank the officers and dispatchers at the UAF Police Department for their response to this incident,” she said in a later statement. “They were able to alert our community quickly, so we all could take steps to keep ourselves safe, and then work this case to identify and arrest a suspect within a short amount of time. I also want to offer kudos to you. In addition to taking appropriate steps to ensure your own safety, many of you shared the alert information on your social media channels and via text message. Sharing accurate information with the people you know is a great way to help even more people stay safe in an incident like this.”
All students and campus staff are automatically signed up for the campus text alert system, which was used to issue a lockdown announcement immediately after the shooting, according to Grimes. She said family and friends can sign up for similar alerts on the UAF website.
Grimes also said counseling is being provided to students and staff.
“I know that experiencing an incident like this can be upsetting,” she said. “If you need someone to talk to, please don’t hesitate to seek help.”
The Student Health and Counseling Center can be reached by calling 907-474-7043.
University of Alaska Fairbanks police responded to a gunman on campus shortly before midnight Saturday.
According to an alert issued by the university at 11:25 p.m., the gunman was possibly barricaded in the Cutler Apartment area, which is student housing.
In an update from UAF at 12:15 a.m. Sunday, the campus reported the incident began to unravel when five men attempted to enter a party in the apartment building.
“The party’s host did not want them there, and an altercation ensued,” UAF wrote in the alert. “The men left and then returned. One of them pointed a gun at people at the party, then stepped outside and fired a shot into the air.”
The five men, described by UAF as four black men and one white man, fled the area in a silver four-door sedan. The university issued a photo (pictured above) and asked those on campus, as well as members of the community, to notify local police if anyone spots the vehicle.
UAF did not report any injuries.
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