Last night, apparently, one of the UofM’s football players, Taylor Bradford, was shot in a car just off campus, possibly in the Central parking lot. He then crashed into a tree around Central and Zach Curlin, the northeast corner of campus, and died shortly thereafter, apparently from the gunshot wound. The police are characterizing this as a non-random shooting. The university has wisely cancelled all classes today.
The email to students went out around 3:45 am. I got on campus around 8:20 am, not having checked my email, and noted that Patterson Hall was as quiet as a mouse… no students, just a few professors. Word travels fast.
The U of M is near several dicey locales – Memphis is a strange patchwork city, racially and economically, where the ‘ok to walk your kids at night’ neighborhoods and the ‘bar your doors before sundown’ areas are often not a block apart. The area where this student, Taylor Bradford, was shot is better than most, between Central and Poplar, in front of gated student housing, and within easy sight of the Engineering building. I drive through that intersection at least once weekly.