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Murder in Nashville Dorm Room

October 21, 1997

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ Nashville tied a record for homicides in a year with a drug-related shootout in a university dorm room on the first day of the school’s ``crime-free week.″

Ryan Anderson, 21, was shot in the head Monday night after exchanging gunfire with a man who was on Tennessee State University campus to sell him a $10 bag of marijuana, police said.

Anderson, a former TSU student, tried to rob the man, 22-year-old Antoine Hester, according to police.

Police believe five people, at least one a TSU student, were in the sixth-floor dorm room at the time. One of two students who lived in the room and two other men were being sought for questioning.

``The students are surprised, caught off guard,″ said Johnnie Bond, president of the Student Government Association. ``They are going to be very cautious about their security. This is a family-oriented campus, and to have someone pass on campus, it’s tragic.″

Hester, of Indianapolis, remained hospitalized in fair condition Tuesday with a gunshot to the stomach. Charges against him were pending.

It was the city’s 105th homicide this year, equaling the record set in 1995.

Dr. James Hefner, the school president, met with about 25 student leaders to review security and solicit suggestions to make the campus safer.

``Personally, I feel safe in my dorm,″ said Teresa Smith, a freshman from Louisville, Ky. ``What happened was unfortunate, but things will happen.″

As part of the school’s ``crime-free week,″ students on Monday began signing an 18-foot banner pledging to keep the campus safe. The banner had 700 signatures Tuesday.

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