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Death toll rises in mass shooting at Oregon college

The suspected gunman is dead.

Washington Post / YouTube

Updated: 10.56 pm

[Note - 8.20am Friday morning: US authorities have now confirmed that nine people died. Seven people were injured. The figures in the article below were based on information from the Oregon Attorney General last night. The latest updated report on the shooting can be found here]. 

AT LEAST 13 people have been killed and more than 20 wounded today in a shooting at a community college in the US state of Oregon.

Oregon State Police had earlier said seven to 10 people were killed in the attack at Umpqua Community College, in the town of Roseburg.

However, Oregon’s Attorney General Ellen Rosenblum later confirmed that the death toll had risen to 13, as reported by local television station KGW.

Douglas County Sheriff John Hanlin confirmed in a press conference that the suspected gunman is dead, and was male.

Officers engaged the gunman, there was an exchange of fire, the shooting threat was neutralised, and officers continued to sweep the building.

Hanlin would not comment on the number of victims.

Oregon Governor Kate Brown confirmed that the suspected shooter was a 20-year-old man.

One student, 18-year-old Kortney Moore of Rogue River, says the gunman shot her teacher and asked others in her classroom about their religion before spraying more bullets.

Moore told the Roseburg News-Review newspaper that she was in a writing class when a shot came through a window, the gunman entered her classroom and told people to get on the ground.

She says the man started asking people to stand up and state their religion, and then opened fire.

Another student at Umpqua, Larry Howell, told NBC News that he was on his way to class when he heard gunfire.

Oregon School Shooting A patient is wheeled into the emergency room at Mercy Medical Center in Roseburg, Oregon. ASSOCIATED PRESS ASSOCIATED PRESS

Other classmates were running through the school away from the shooter.

“Everybody is reaching out to one another and checking on everyone, we don’t know which one of our colleagues are down,” he told the station, adding that students had learnt of fatalities by listening to police scanners.

An audio recording of the police dispatch during the shooting appears to indicate that officers exchanged fire with the suspect, but that detail has not been confirmed.

Readers should note that this recording contains a real-time exchange of reports which may turn out not to be accurate:

bcfylb / YouTube

One student tweeted just moments after the shooting began, but later reported that she herself was safe.

Police say the attack began around 10.38am local time (6.38pm Irish time).

Capture Douglas County Sheriff's Office Douglas County Sheriff's Office

Authorities said the shooting took place in one of the classrooms in the science building.

CNN, citing local officials, said at least 20 people were critically injured, including one woman who was shot in the chest.

The college was immediately placed on lockdown as firefighters, police and concerned parents rushed to the site.

umpqua Google Maps Google Maps

Umpqua Community College has 3,000 students, many of them mature and returning students, and is located 130 miles south of the Oregon state capital of Salem, and 175 miles south of Portland.

Sheriff Hanlin this evening called it a “timber community” with a low crime rate.

Additional reporting by Dan Mac Guill, the Associated Press and AFP. 

Read: Professor killed in US college shooting described as ‘terrific, family man’

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