Fast Bullets, Slow Justice

Nearly eight months after a shooting incident at the University Village Apartments, the non-student accused of pulling the trigger has yet to be prosecuted.

Omar Everton Graham Jr., identified as the April “finals week shooter,” faces a plea conference on Jan. 23 for the charges of shooting into a building, which could get him up to 15 years in prison, and violating a concealed weapons permit, which is punishable with up to 60 days.

At approximately 1 a.m. on April 30, 2008, campus police officers were alerted to shots fired at building 58 of the University Village Apartments. Students at a small party in one of the apartments reported that a non-student had begun arguing with another man over a red hat. It was then said that Graham pulled a gun and shot three bullets inside the apartment, leaving a hole in one wall.

After arriving at the scene, police initiated the siren alert system, which placed the campus on lockdown – meaning no students could leave their rooms.

The lockdown was lifted between noon and 12:30 p.m. later that day when police arrested Graham at Johnson & Wales University in North Miami, where he was a student.

The last hearing for the current charges was on Oct. 15, when Graham’s defense attorneys elected to set up a plea conference for Jan. 23. At the conference, Graham will either plead guilty or not guilty, and charges will either be filed or he will go on to face a trial by jury.

Graham had initially faced charges of attempted murder, aggravated battery, and possession and discharging of a firearm on school property, but the charges were changed after the state failed to file charges because of insufficient evidence.