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Florida student may have plotted dorm massacre before suicide

March 18, 2013|By Matt Pearce
  • James Oliver Seevakumara, a University of Central Florida student who killed himself.
James Oliver Seevakumara, a University of Central Florida student who… (Florida Highway Patrol )

A student at the University of Central Florida may have aborted his plan to massacre fellow students at his dorm and decided instead to kill himself, officials said Monday.

Authorities identified the dead man as James Oliver Seevakumara, 30, of Lake Mary, Fla., who was found shot in the head in his bedroom of a four-bedroom suite in the Tower 1 residence hall. He had a .45-caliber handgun, a .22-caliber tactical rifle and a backpack containing four improvised explosive devices, officials said.

Seevakumara had no disciplinary record with the university and had never visited campus psychological services, officials said.

He attended the business administration school between 2010 and 2012, but had not enrolled this semester. Officials said they had been in the process of evicting him from the dorm.

Seevakumara began buying weapons and hundreds of rounds of ammunition in February, authorities said.

Officials said they thought Seevakumara had pulled a dorm fire alarm shortly after midnight Monday, possibly to lure other students into a concentrated location where they could be attacked.

Seevakumara had pulled a gun on a roommate who hid in a bathroom and called 911, and campus Police Chief Richard Beary speculated that the sound of police arriving may have changed Seevakumara's plans, according to the Orlando Sentinel.

Police said they found notes indicating Seevakumara was planning an attack, but the notes didn't list individual names.

“It could have been a bad day for everybody here,” said Beary, according to a university news release. “All things considered, I think we were very blessed at the University of Central Florida."

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matt.pearce@latimes.com

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