BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Southern University in Louisiana held a candlelight vigil Tuesday night for two 19-year-old students who were shot and killed at a party outside an off-campus apartment complex.
Southern’s Student Government Association organized the vigil on the school’s Baton Rouge campus. Association President Dominique Diamond said hundreds of students, faculty and community members took part, singing songs and hearing from a speaker as they mourned their loss.
“We lit candles at the end of the ceremony,” Diamond said by telephone. “Some took it really hard because they were good friends.”
Police said Lashuntae Benton of Lake Charles, Louisiana, and Annette January, of Gary, Indiana, were killed during a shootout early Sunday between 22-year-old Ernest Bernard Felton of Miami, and a 24-year-old man who was wounded.
Baton Rouge Police Sgt. Don Coppola said the women appeared to be “innocent bystanders” who were caught in the crossfire.
Felton, a former Southern football player, remained in jail Tuesday following his arrest on an attempted second-degree murder charge related to the 24-year-old man’s shooting. A judge ordered him held on $90,000 bond.
Southern spokesman Henry Tillman said Felton is a part-time student at Southern University.
Coppola said the wounded man remained in a hospital Monday night. His injuries weren’t considered life-threatening.
Investigators were awaiting results of ballistic analysis to determine who’s responsible for fatally shooting the women.
Autopsies performed Monday showed Benton was shot once in her head and once in her left arm, while January had a single gunshot wound to her chest.
January, a freshman, was a member of Southern’s track and field team. Benton, a sophomore, was a student athletic trainer.