Friends baffled by killing of Ala. college student
MOBILE, Ala. — Classmates and friends are questioning why a police officer fatally shot a University of South Alabama freshman who was naked and had been banging on a window at police headquarters.
Campus officials did not give any indication that Gil Collar, 18, of Wetumpka had a weapon when he was shot. A university spokesman said he was fatally wounded about 1:30 a.m. Saturday after an officer heard a bang on a window and went outside to investigate.
A statement issued by university spokesman Keith Ayers said Collar, who wrestled at Wetumpka High School before enrolling at South Alabama, assumed a “fighting stance” and chased an officer before being shot. The officer tried to retreat numerous times to defuse the situation before opening fire, the school said.
But sophomore Tyler Kendrick said campus authorities have not provided any satisfying answers about why Collar was killed.
“Really, it just upsets me that there's no other way to apprehend an unarmed student rather than shooting him. I don't understand that,” Kendrick said.
Student Joshua Frye said it seemed the officer could have used something other than a firearm to stop Collar.
“What I feel is that a cop has more than a gun,” Frye said.
The officer was placed on paid leave, and an autopsy will determine if drugs or alcohol were involved.
Campus officials said the confrontation was recorded by security cameras. The video and other information have been turned over to the district attorney and the Mobile County Sheriff's Office, which will review the shooting.
Colgan Meanor had known Collar since high school.
“He was a great, loving guy who always made people smile,” she said. “He's not the kind of guy that people knew him and said he would do something like this.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Santorum charter flight tab broke $400K
- Soldiers’ families awarded $134.2M in Afghanistan grenade attack
- Illegal immigrants stay in shift of policies
- New York’s fracking ban starts clock for lawsuits
- $18.7B record-breaking deal clears path for BP to put Gulf Coast oil spill in rearview mirror
- Kentucky clerk sued for denying license to wed to any couples
- Catholic bishops pressure presidential candidates
- Heat records smashed across West
- Thefts, foul-ups by employees cost TSA $3M in 5 years
- Counterterror efforts making U.S. any safer?
- Measles death 1st known in U.S. in 12 years