December 9th, 2012
04:49 AM ET

Campus cops shoot, kill graduate student at California college

Campus police at California State University San Bernardino shot and killed a graduate student following an altercation Saturday night, authorities said.

Police said officers responded to University Village, an off-campus student dormitory, regarding a disturbance involving Bartholomew Williams, 38.

Williams became aggressive and an altercation with officers followed in the hallway of the dorm, the college said in a statement. Officers then fired their weapons because they feared for their lives, police said.

Williams died at the scene.

One officer was taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injury.

Williams was majoring in educational instructional technology, and started at the school in the summer of 2011, police spokesman Sid Robinson said.

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Filed under: Crime • U.S.
soundoff (604 Responses)
  1. Bad Carma

    A few more details would have been nice. I see yellow journalism is alive and well. Moral to this story, don't fight with an armed officer(s).

    December 9, 2012 at 5:43 am | Report abuse |
  2. Dead Students

    Simply one more example of "death by cop." It used to mean a suicide but these days it means another cop used lethal force instead. Time to arm ourselves as you are more likely to die from a bullet from a cop, than you are to die in an automobile accident! Cops are not here to protect us anymore. They use us a target practice!

    December 9, 2012 at 5:43 am | Report abuse |
    • Name*terra firma

      With all due respect, but ummmmm, statistics of vehicular deaths vs. Individuals who die at the hands of law enforcement in any given year do not support or even come close to supporting your statement.

      December 9, 2012 at 6:20 am | Report abuse |
    • PurpleStikyPunch


      December 9, 2012 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • SoTired

      I'm not agreeing as I don't agree with your aertions, but notice the Nat'l order of police never release numbers publicly of how many "suspects" are killed each year by police? is that not just odd? I mean car crashes, dui deaths, cancer, ect. are all shoved down our throats thru billboards ad's ect. but not the number of people killed by police nation wide.

      December 9, 2012 at 1:25 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Ron

    Bad Carma, what's black behavior?

    December 9, 2012 at 5:47 am | Report abuse |
    • You don't make sense

      Who said this had anything to do with color at all. People like you make me sad for our future. Sad indeed.

      December 9, 2012 at 10:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Portland tony

      #you SMS...If you are referring to my comment, It was originally a reply to a post implying that big black cops killed a white student and would not be held responsible!

      December 9, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
    • touche

      what's "Carma?"

      December 9, 2012 at 11:24 am | Report abuse |
    • retread

      Not sure what you're talking about but it's "Karma" with a K you dingbat

      December 9, 2012 at 11:45 am | Report abuse |
    • JLennon

      It's Karma, dummy.

      December 9, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • Neal

      its Karma not Carma

      December 10, 2012 at 9:41 am | Report abuse |
    • Steve Lyons

      Sadly it is often violent.

      December 11, 2012 at 12:01 am | Report abuse |
  4. Ajay

    Why a law abiding citizen would fight with an on duty police officer?

    December 9, 2012 at 5:51 am | Report abuse |
    • PurpleStikyPunch

      If you spit on them it's assault on an officer. Pull your arm away and it's assault on an officer. That a cop says he was assaulting an officer doesn't mean he was. The cops definition of assault is different than the civilians, and the dictionaries for that matter.

      December 9, 2012 at 1:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • geeworker

      Purple Punch

      I did not know their was a definition of assault for police officers. I consulted Webster and I was not able to find anything under that was just for police officers and assault pls post reference of the definition assault as defined by police officers

      December 10, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Stormdrain

    You just have to be there, to know what happened. There will be an Investigation.

    December 9, 2012 at 5:53 am | Report abuse |
  6. truebob

    Idiotic comment. And the California University police are a very well trained and funded professional organization. I'm not saying they were right or wrong because I wasn't there, but neither were you. You probably have a better chance of getting abused in some small town Barney Fife police force than by these guys.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
    • NickD

      Sorry true bob, but I was raised and came of age in a little town with a "barney fife" police force. Your comment was so far off base that it makes your words look very ignorant.

      December 9, 2012 at 8:54 am | Report abuse |
    • SoTired

      Oh you mean like the California university cop in berkley that pepper sprayed kids for sitting on a sidewalk in their own quad? the same cop that was later fired for excessive force? Yeah that is some great training.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse |
    • PurpleStikyPunch

      Well since the last person that dealt with them was killed I don't think you're right.

      December 9, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • PurpleStikyPunch

      Since the last person to deal with them was killed I think you should rethink your statement.

      December 9, 2012 at 1:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • WonderingAboutOurSocialFabric

      ..and you know how well they are trained...exactly how?

      December 9, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • svann

      What makes you think campus police are well trained? Were the pepper spray dousing police that got sued well trained?

      December 9, 2012 at 1:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jason

      They are not trained correctly

      December 10, 2012 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Drunkin' Mom

    Cops are so stupid.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:04 am | Report abuse |
    • freedom44

      I agree with drunkenmom. They are overpaid uneducated little sizes with bigger egos. They probably instigated his reaction .

      December 9, 2012 at 6:21 am | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Those who disobey armed cops are the stupid ones. I belive 95% of cops are borderline psychotic, but that's all the more reason to avoid a confrontation and do what you told.

      December 9, 2012 at 6:55 am | Report abuse |
    • Sagebrush Shorty

      Have a drink. It's almost 9am and you are overdue.

      December 9, 2012 at 9:34 am | Report abuse |
    • Spencer Shaw

      Hey freedom. You realize they make about $45,000 a year right? You call THAT overpaid? And like it or not, you need them so get over it. I think the warden needs you to get off the computer now. And Mom, you're back trolling I see.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Name*terra firma

    These are all of the "facts" we can expect at this time, b/c in the haste to be "first" news outlets compromise quality, accuracy and perspective. However, we as free thinking readers need to use and reserve judgement lest we promulgate and become an unsuspecting participant of "yellow journalism."

    December 9, 2012 at 6:07 am | Report abuse |
  9. BG

    Really? a 38 year old grad student? Majoring in "educational instuctional technology"? REALLY?????? he had other issues besdies being a big kid.

    I mean, is that REALLY a major? Sounds like a dotorate in agricutural journalism.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:10 am | Report abuse |
    • Slappy

      Really? I'm so sick of this "Really" trend...Really.

      December 9, 2012 at 6:31 am | Report abuse |
    • elmo

      Relay, tell us how you really feel.

      I bet he was black. Police only shoot black people, really It's true I read it on the intetweb. Really I did

      December 9, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sko

      Thank you!!!

      December 10, 2012 at 10:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • MontanaTrace

      new name for school librarian.

      December 9, 2012 at 7:26 am | Report abuse |
    • Biran

      My sister got her masters in that. Got paid a 6 figure income flying around the country teaching teachers how to integrate technology into their classrooms.

      December 9, 2012 at 7:46 am | Report abuse |
    • s kel

      umm overpaid. Firefigters do more for a lot less.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • topfuel500

      Yeah and the education of our students is going oh so well, then why are we ranked pretty low with other developed nations in education if we have all this technology in the classrooms?

      December 12, 2012 at 10:10 am | Report abuse |
    • JD

      Yeah, that's it! Education should fall into your prescribed age limitation.

      A 30 year old college freshman (who, also, happens to have a career)

      December 9, 2012 at 7:46 am | Report abuse |
    • BigSir


      December 9, 2012 at 9:05 am | Report abuse |
    • MyMindSpeak

      You live on campus in a dorm with other 18 year old freshman sharing a room? Hmmmm!

      December 9, 2012 at 3:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • forusall

      Sweet good times if it's especially if it's coed your the coolest cat ah you jealous your tellitubbie I mean wife will not let you live in a dorm I'm sure you don't want people looking into how you lived your life after getting killed by a cop

      December 10, 2012 at 11:05 am | Report abuse |
    • Jim

      Does working at Mc Donalds count?

      December 10, 2012 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • GregA

      Spot on JD. Gotta love the cynical, accusatory, and outright dumb comments aimed at someone who was just murdered.

      December 12, 2012 at 10:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim - Tampa

      Instructional technology is one of the largest and most in demand degrees around.

      December 9, 2012 at 7:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Insane Moments

      Apparently the most dangerous too!

      December 9, 2012 at 9:00 am | Report abuse |
    • geeworker

      Just another "fake" degree IT and basket weaving are just few more. Instructional technology fields are in "demand" because of the push to modernize the way the teachers run the classroom. Most of these Instructional technology degree holders go around the country duping the schools system into a over priced contract that give instruction block to the teachers that tell them to use the internet in the classroom and the wounder why the schools system across the nation are broke.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Swimmer

      @BG: I'm not clear on what your comments mean. What's wrong with these college majors?

      December 9, 2012 at 7:56 am | Report abuse |
    • J in PBG

      Since we don't know any details, also the possibility could be his previous career went out the window with bad times and he was changing career. And wouldn't a tazer have done a satisfactory job in subduing him? (Here we go again...."I felt threatened". so I killed him)

      December 9, 2012 at 8:27 am | Report abuse |
    • Sagebrush Shorty

      If you ever have to call 911 I hope they hang up on you.

      December 9, 2012 at 9:33 am | Report abuse |
    • Jody P

      There are no details in this report. Unless you have walked a mile in their shoes don't be in such a rush to judge. I have. There are so many possibilities here that I can't even begin. Was he under the influence of something? Was he in a psychotic break? Who knows? People in these states do not feel pain at all so none of those less lethal tools work-period. Also because of their state of mind you can not reason with them what so ever. You are left with essentially no options, especially if the person is in the process of hurting someone. Tragic but unavoidable in some situations. Lets just wait and see what happened.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
    • fthepolice

      these campus police at best should be in tandem teams, with a senior officer. and yes a taser gun would have been adequate. Remember the kid in Oakland got shot face down prone on the cement at a BART station??

      December 9, 2012 at 1:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • transplantedhoosier

      Agree w/ using a tazer instead of a gun!

      December 9, 2012 at 1:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      An idiotic comment on every level. A student can be of any age, and 38 year old graduate students are not unusual anywhere in the country. Many professionals go back to school to earn advanced degrees. The degree itself is a substantive and important one, as any educator or technology professional could tell you. But it sounds like you come from a limited educational background yourself, so what's the use?

      December 9, 2012 at 9:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Jill


      December 9, 2012 at 4:43 pm | Report abuse |
    • rdk

      Only kids begin a statement with the word "really?". If you try to criticize someone for going to college to improve their lives, at least demonstrate that you have higher intellect.

      December 9, 2012 at 9:09 am | Report abuse |
    • esf

      LOL, I just found this in another CNN article:
      " Really? If someone needed more information to know that security there had deteriorated beyond the point of safety, they weren't waiting for warning - they were waiting for someone to die."
      This is in an opinion piece written by Gen. Michael Hayden, former Director of the CIA.

      December 28, 2012 at 1:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • MrDifficult

      YOU are criticizing someone's DOTORATE?

      December 9, 2012 at 10:19 am | Report abuse |
    • Hannah

      You do realize that he could have just been a MA student. Both MA and PhD candidates are referred to as grad students.

      December 10, 2012 at 11:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Grandpa RD

      Hey, SOMEBODY has to learn how to clean the erasers and sharpen pencils...

      December 9, 2012 at 10:47 am | Report abuse |
    • t3chsupport

      Educational instruction technology is the future of education. Just because you can't wrap your head around the fact that the world is changing doesn't mean that others aren't already looking to profit from it.

      December 9, 2012 at 10:51 am | Report abuse |
    • Ken

      BG, given the fact that technology is developing so rapidly AND that teachers aren't equipped to keep pace with how to utilize these technologies – the field of educational technology is fast rising. Ever hear of LeapFrog? Yea, the billion dollar educational technology company. Your ignorance is very apparent. Learn before you speak about a topic you know nothing about.

      December 9, 2012 at 11:38 am | Report abuse |
    • steven harnack

      I see.So 38 year old college students had better realize that they are expendable? Especially if they are studying something that you deem irrelevant? Could the problem be in that you are simply demeaning a field that you know absolutely nothing about?

      December 9, 2012 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • mike

      Good grief. Have some compassion: The guy is dead and his major is not important to him – or anyone else – at this time.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • joe in ps

      Yes, it really is, and an important field at that. Are you familiar with computers, ipads, smartboards, and other technologies being used in the classroom today? Perhaps you should do your research before making a comment like that.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • Edwin

      I guess you missed the fact that people get paid $100K+ a year in that field... there are probably a lot of lucrative fields you don't know about. But go ahead and make fun of what you don't understand.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • chicadow

      Yes, really. Anyone who knows anything about education knows that a degree in educational instructional technology will lead to cash.

      There are lots of former teachers who don't want to be poor and crapped on by society so they go back to school to make money and be appreciated. Really.

      And really? Are you an SNL fan or a valley girl?

      December 9, 2012 at 12:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Archyle

      And there are more current teachers who work Til they obtain tenure then tell thier students "it's not my job to teach, I have tenure"....the system is so broken on every level it is downright falling apart around us, hope you
      Are ready

      December 10, 2012 at 12:55 am | Report abuse |
    • @BG

      Ever hear of "non-traditional student?" Or, better yet, "Grad student?" Clearly you've never been to college or any kind of continuing educational facility. REALLY.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Josh

      Based upon your spelling of the word 'instructional' I'd say we needed this man and this program more than ever.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • aaron

      thats actually a somewhat popular major

      December 9, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • mrpips

      Shouldn't you be cleaning a table somewhere?

      December 9, 2012 at 1:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Renegatus

      This is your concern? Why he was going to college? You missed the mark entirely. And what is your degree in that makes you so royally high and mighty Mr. Pretentious?

      December 9, 2012 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • loscar727

      sure why not... The iPad, Internet, iPhone, and countless of other technologies have become or are becoming educational tools. So educational systems based on these technologies need to be developed.

      December 9, 2012 at 8:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sarah

      You are obviously not a graduate student; if you were you would understand the importance of studying and researching such things. Do not mock what you do not understand.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:47 am | Report abuse |
    • EarlGrayHot

      IT's TECHNOLOGY not agriculture. And you make fun.

      December 10, 2012 at 9:23 am | Report abuse |
    • bill davis

      What a dumb comment. I got my MBA at 40. Does that make me a big kid or someone that continues his education?

      December 10, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • Angie

      Who cares if he was 38 going to school as a graduate student? Why assume he has problems? Why assume the cops are at fault? Why assume he attacked anyone?

      Nobody knows except the people who were there. This guy died as a result. No matter what way you slice it, it's a darn shame and I wish that it had never happened.

      Prayers going out to the family and friends of all those affected.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • sybaris

      Sorry you bombed defending your thesis

      December 10, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • alfa0mega939

      That is a real major. It's focused on instructional videos, photography, and animation and how to use those as effective teaching tools.

      December 14, 2012 at 11:44 am | Report abuse |
    • Jules

      Yes, this really is a major. Because it involves technology, I am sure it is WAY over your head, since you asked the question. Duh.

      December 17, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • asds

      What's the point of this comment? That he had mental issues because his course of study was unimpressive? So he deserved to die? Think about what you are saying for a change.

      December 31, 2012 at 5:56 am | Report abuse |
  10. inawe21

    College kid? He was 38. Hardly qualifies as a kid

    December 9, 2012 at 6:11 am | Report abuse |
    • Mtheumer

      Where in the article did they call him a "kid"?

      December 9, 2012 at 9:38 am | Report abuse |
    • Nicoleasm

      I believe the term was graduate student

      December 10, 2012 at 8:58 am | Report abuse |
    • weezer

      And thus it was justifiable homicide. If he was 23, then no...

      38 yo grad students are known to be unstable. Like rabid pit bulls. Shoot them at every opportunity.

      December 10, 2012 at 10:59 am | Report abuse |
    • sybaris


      You might need some schoolin' there yerself buckshot.

      Read the headline again and ask someone what a graduate student is.

      December 10, 2012 at 7:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • richard

      Amen !

      December 11, 2012 at 8:47 am | Report abuse |
    • BarbD

      I'm a 51 year old college STUDENT. Whatever your age bias may be, college is not restricted to the teens and twenties.

      December 13, 2012 at 11:35 am | Report abuse |
  11. Name*terra firma

    One standard truth rises above all others in general: like an earlier post said, if you are interested in celebrating more birthdays on this earth, it is probably never a good idea to tangle, incite, intimidate, threaten or posture with anybody who has a handgun at their hip! I am confident law enforcement did NOT just walk into the dorm, guns drawn and cap 8 shots into the student. Here enter the truth... And here endeth the lesson.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:15 am | Report abuse |
    • wildone

      "I am confident law enforcement did NOT just walk into the dorm, guns drawn and cap 8 shots into the student."

      Now if the shooting had in New York City......He may have just been going for his wallet to show ID.

      December 9, 2012 at 6:33 am | Report abuse |
  12. Tyokol

    Why were those dimwitted cops afraid for their lives?...because Williams was black? Those men belong in jail, not patrolling our streets.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:15 am | Report abuse |
    • freedom44

      Well said.

      December 9, 2012 at 6:22 am | Report abuse |
    • Sagebrush Shorty

      You have no idea what actually happened. You also have no idea about the race of the officers involved. Actually you have no idea about anything except jumping to conclusions.

      December 9, 2012 at 9:36 am | Report abuse |
    • Spencer Shaw

      You seem to have the brain the size of a small walnut, and the critical thinking skills of a rotting potato.

      December 9, 2012 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • Barb

      Did I miss something in the story that stated the student was black? I went over it again and again and I haven't seen anything to indicate that.

      December 12, 2012 at 2:42 am | Report abuse |
  13. john

    Way too many streetpunks have some kind of ego involvement, like they are the ones to propose standards of ethics and conduct to the point of streetfights and killing. Stop pontificating, and create peaceful conduct.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:15 am | Report abuse |
  14. Insane Moments

    Two against one and they feared for their lives?

    Police need to realize it is "okay" to retreat to safer ground besides using their trigger death card all the time – so much for critical thinking skills.

    Get ready for more riots when these two college campus cops are cleared of murder.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:28 am | Report abuse |
    • PurpleStikyPunch

      Agreed. Why couldn't they have spent an extra couple hours talking him down and letting him speak his case. Given more time he probably would have gone peacefully. They simply had to arrest him then and there and couldn't possibly give the situation more time to cool down?

      December 9, 2012 at 1:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • geeworker

      Who cares it's California

      December 10, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
  15. wildone

    Sounds like he should have majored in Anger Management.

    December 9, 2012 at 6:30 am | Report abuse |
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