KINGSBURG, Calif. (KFSN) -- A college instructor suspected in the fatal shooting of a professor at Delta State University died Monday of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound after trying to flee police, authorities said.
Shannon Lamb had earlier told authorities that he was "not going to jail." The Monday morning incident led to a lockdown of the college campus in Cleveland, Mississippi.
Kingsburg High graduate Katelyn Herrera is a freshman at Delta State and has been there for only two weeks. But long before the rest of the country heard about the shooting, Rosie and Roger Herrera received a text from their daughter. Katelyn wrote, "Mom I'm safe. There's an active shooter on campus. A professor got shot. We are on lockdown now."
The message took Rosie's breath away so she kept texting her daughter. "Probably at least 50 and sometimes she didn't reply right away."
Mom frantically called several times. Herrera explained, "It's not even like bye. It's I gotta go and that's even worse because you don't even know what's going on at the time."
Katelyn was in a seminar class in a building across the street from where Professor Ethan Schmidt was shot. Herrera said she was, "just praying and hoping everything was okay."
As officers started clearing campus buildings, Katelyn and her classmates lay low inside their classroom unaware where the shooter might be. When students were finally evacuated, Katelyn described the scene as something out of a movie.
Watching it all unfold on TV saddened her parents 2,000 miles away. Rosie said, "When you know it's your own child and you see it happen and you know that your child is in that danger, that was really hard for me to watch."
Katelyn is on a swimming scholarship at Delta State. She immediately fell in love with the college with just 3,500 students.
Rosie remembered, "It was a small campus and she said it was like Kingsburg. It felt like home."
The Herrera family was shocked something like this could happen on campus. Katelyn, though, took comfort gathering with her swim team.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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