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A gunman opened fire on Monday night (Feb 13) at Michigan State University’s main campus in East Lansing, killing three people and injuring five, some severely, before he was found dead hours later, apparently from a self-inflicted gunshot, police said.

The suspect opened fire inside a school building shortly after 8pm local time, said Chris Rozman, interim deputy chief of campus police.

The gunman then moved on foot to a nearby building where more shots were fired.

“There are three confirmed fatalities,” Michigan State University police said in a statement on Twitter. “This is in addition to the five victims who have been transported to the hospital.”

Some of the wounded suffered life-threatening injuries, Rozman told reporters.

He said investigators had no information about the motive, adding that the university was not aware of any threats made to the campus before Monday’s bloodshed.

Rozman said the suspect “was contacted by law enforcement off campus” at some point, adding, “that scene is being investigated as a crime scene.”

The gunman was later confirmed dead, from an apparently self-inflicted gunshot roughly four hours after the violence began, Rozman said.

“There is no longer a threat to campus. We believe there to be only one suspect in this incident,” he said.

Several campus building had been cleared and secured nearly two hours after the gunfire was first reported on campus, MSU police said.

Police and the city of East Lansing, a college town near the state capital of Lansing and about 145km northwest of Detroit, tweeted that a single suspect, initially described as a short male wearing a mask, was at large and believed to be on foot.

Students, faculty and residents in surrounding off-campus neighbourhoods were urged by authorities to “shelter in place,” while police searched for the suspect.

MSU is a major public institution of higher education whose flagship East Lansing campus accounts for 50,000 graduate and undergraduate students.

University police said on Monday night that all classes and campus activities would be cancelled for the next 48 hours.

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer, who was briefed on the shooting, referred to the university’s athletic logo on Twitter, writing: “Let’s wrap our arms around the Spartan community tonight.”

The night’s violence came roughly 14 months after a deadly mass shooting on Nov 30, 2021, at Oxford High School in Oakland County, Michigan, about 80 miles east of East Lansing, in which a 15-year-old student opened fire with a semi-automatic pistol.

Four classmates were killed and six other students and a teacher were wounded in that attack, the deadliest US school shooting that year.

Authorities said the teenage suspect, who has pleaded not guilty to murder charges, used a gun his parents bought him as a Christmas present despite signs that he was emotionally disturbed. Both parents were charged with involuntary manslaughter in the case.