Finals are under way at North Lake College as the campus tries to return to normal after a murder-suicide shooting on campus.
Families and friends of Janeera Nickol Gonzalez are raising money for her funeral. They have started a GoFundMe page to help cover expenses.
Adrian Victor Torres, 21, shot Gonzalez, 20, on May 3 in the Performance Hall Building on campus. Torres then killed himself in a locker room shower stall shortly afterward. The college went on lockdown at 11:43 a.m. as students and staff barricaded their classrooms, police searched the campus and secured the perimeter.
North Lake, like Richland, is one of seven colleges in the Dallas County Community College District. Chancellor Joe May released a statement saying, “On behalf of the entire district, I want to express our grief and sadness to the North Lake College family. We are working with the Irving Police Department on this investigation and we thank them for their assistance along with our North Lake police officers for their immediate response. Now we must move forward as a community to console each other and to help one another during this difficult time.”
Richland President Kay Eggleston reached out to North Lake’s President Dr. Christa Slejiko to offer campus resources and to share her condolences.
“We share the sense of sadness and grief for the lives lost in yesterday’s tragic events at North Lake College. I have reached out to President Slejko offering Richland’s support with our counseling staff and any other needed areas of support and facilities as faculty resume preparation and administer final exams,” she said. She emphasized that Richland College police are capable of dealing with the challenges of an active shooter.
Slejiko said, “We’re heartbroken that such a tragedy has occurred on campus. We will address any needs for counseling on campus as soon as we re-open.”
On Friday Gonzalez’s parents held a press conference outside of their home in Irving. Lucy Gonzalez, Janeera’s mother said, “I want justice. I want somebody to give me answers. I want to see my daughter.” The family wanted more answers about the investigation and to know how Torres received his gun. They also claim he was obsessed with their daughter. A vigil for Gonzalez was held at Irving High School Monday evening.
Robert Baker, commander of Richland campus police, raised police presence in response to the shooting. He said, “It is important that each of us stay ever-vigilant to aid in the safety and security of everyone at Richland College.” He urged everyone at Richland to review lockdown procedures for emergency situations.
Richland College Counseling Center is staffed with licensed professional counselors available on a walk-in basis in the Lakeside Resource Center, El Paso Hall, E082. Phone: 972-238-377.