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. NotaCnnFan

    I pray the police are safe today.

    December 10, 2012 at 12:59 pm | Report abuse |

    i LOVE how the article is re-written as the day goes on. Great reporting CNN (liberal crap) LOL

    December 10, 2012 at 1:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • w

      So as they get more details on what happened, they aren't supposed to update their story? I suppose they should just leave out any new details and just let the public assume what happened. If you hate the "liberal" media why are you reading CNN and taking the time to post on the boards?

      December 10, 2012 at 1:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • ThaGerm

      As a conservative I can understand your confusion. You see, in the real world the facts come in a little at a time and so as things become clearer from said facts, they update the story so we have the latest information. I know it's weird, at Faux you get one story and damn the facts that may come later, you get ONE story!...ooooonnnneeee!

      December 10, 2012 at 1:43 pm | Report abuse |
  3. MashaSobaka

    Obviously we don't have the full story here, but frequently when officers "fear for their lives," the person they pump full of bullets was armed with something that could not have caused much harm. The whole "If you start shooting, empty your clip" thing needs to stop. Shoot them once in the leg or taze them. Or don't. Keep shooting people armed with butter knives to death. It's a great way to combat the "bloodlusty power junkie" image.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bill, Bloomington Il

      You should stop watching TV.

      December 10, 2012 at 1:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • denman838

      Law Enforcement and military are trained to aim for center body mass almost without exception. Snipers are about the only ones who would ever aim for an extremity or a head shot. They're also trained that if they pull their weapons, it's only because there's a 99.999% likelihood they'll use them. IF they use them, they're going to make 100% sure the suspect goes down and stays down. That, more often than not, means emptying the clip. Lastly, you have to remember – situations like this are extremely emtionally, intellectually and fear- charged moments.

      December 10, 2012 at 2:14 pm | Report abuse |
  4. bill davis

    When did we start hiring all these sissy's as cops. They are killing people at an alarming clip.

    December 10, 2012 at 1:36 pm | Report abuse |
  5. david saint

    do they not teach cops to fight anymore, what the he11??

    December 10, 2012 at 1:39 pm | Report abuse |
  6. denman838

    This is really pretty simple. Or maybe it isn't, because so many people consistently get it wrong. If a cop tells you to do something, DO IT! Even if he's 100% wrong, there will be time once the moment passes for you to sue his and his department's ass off. But out on "the street", arguing with a police officer will go against you 100% of the time, sometimes fatally so. Are there bad cops? Poorly trained cops? Are there crooked cops? Sure there are. But I'd wager they up an incredibly small percentage of the cops across the country.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tptlead

      Your "incredibly small percentage"is about one-third or 33%. That was the percentage of cops out on bogus worker's comp claims at any one time when I was providing worker's comp care to police departments in Connecticut. These are public employees. Open up the files on their "workplace injuries" to see who the real liars are. I remember well the three state cops who broke limbs after the canoe they were riding in behind a snowmobile crashed into several trees. They were playing at a friend's farm, but were technically "on-call." I also liked the assistant police chief of a town who, every year like clockwork, "sprained" his ankle to get the 12 weeks off around the holidays. It was nice to see him the next day at the shopping center carrying boxes and bags without a brace or limp.

      December 10, 2012 at 3:08 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Steven

    Lets not post the entire story cnn. You left out the part that Pepper Spray and Baton Strikes showed no signs of slowing the guy once he attacked the officers. They were able to get one handcuff on him and he went crazy. He at one point got ahold of pepper spray and used it against an officer. They said he was growling like an animal and had "super human strength".

    The officers fired on him once he was on top of one of the officers and they feared for his safety.

    December 10, 2012 at 2:59 pm | Report abuse |
  8. andy

    So...he was 38 and living in a dorm? Suck...

    December 10, 2012 at 3:28 pm | Report abuse |
  9. darknesscrown

    CA is full of wacky people (probably our weather...maybe?), but there is no question that CA police are EXTREMELY trigger-happy. No doubt about it.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • jlv

      trigger happy goes back to your wacky people comment

      December 10, 2012 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • LC

      I live nearby and attended more than 2 decades ago – small and very safe at the time. But please do understand that a university is a small city – complete with the best and worst of humanity which can express itself in heroic -or horrible- actions, at a moments notice. I'm sorry for the student, having had mental health issues that required several police calls during the day...but I am also VERY sorry for the officers dispatched to the scene who are given the responsibility for the task without the supported authority to act. There was a large mid-term graduation just before his death. Did he have an issue (not getting an expected degree?). People of any age should be welcome in college but dorms should have an age limit to weed out the perpetual students....

      December 10, 2012 at 5:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • rumfish

      Now, will every one finally grasp that George Zimmerman is innocent? If cops can shoot an unarmed man just because he uses physical force against them, why should be a private citizen held accountable?????! I am very sure these cops had everything to do with his violent outburst….

      December 10, 2012 at 6:20 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Patrick Portland

    Bottom line – do as the police ask & no one dies. Sick & tired of these left wing arm chair quartebacks who were not at the scene spouting off their sympathies for the s-called "innocent" victim. Dollars to donuts, this was a justified shooting as it usually is, but they will take the matter to court and get a ridiculous sum of money for a justified shooting. Obviously, you CAN put a $$ amount on the woth of a person'd life.

    December 10, 2012 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • LOL

      LMAO. You weren't even there. You're doing the same thing. "You weren't there?! How could you say this wasn't justified!" Excuse me, YOU weren't there, how could you say this WAS justified?

      Makes me wonder why we're giving the police so much money for pepper spray, stun shields, tear gas, etc... when all they ever use is lethal force.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • LOL

      talk about a sheep. Do as the police say. This story can't be wrong.

      He became aggressive. Is all they told you. And you're telling everyone who is skeptical that they're wrong, and to justify it you just "because I'm right".

      December 10, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom, Tom the Other One

      Look up the term " Dollars to donuts". Complying with a police order isn’t being a sheep, its being smart. You’re not some heroic rebel fighting for your freedom.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • debbie

      tom, I don't think they were saying following police command is being a sheep, I think they meant always believing every shooting is justified is being a sheep, clearly some are not. LMPD shot a guy who was handcuffed and face down on the floor because they said he was getting a pocket knife out of his back pocket, there was a bunch of them one of him, a taser and or 2 guys poucing couldn't have got the knife? Really?? I absolutely believe if anyone has a gun, and doesn't immediately drop it, shooting is justifed, otherwise, there are other ways and police are or should be well trained to use them. I also believe most police do NOT want to kill if they can keep from it, but still some will unnecessarily do it.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • jth

      so you're philosophy is obey the police or die....... there might be a middle ground where officers do not respond with deadly force unless they, or others, are in immediate danger of serious injury.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ben

      OFFICER Patrick defending the pathological power trip of most cops.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:55 pm | Report abuse |
    • leticia bey

      Is it justified if the person unarmed and has no way of seriously harming a police team? It is justified if the person is mentally disabled? Is it justified if police can use tear gas, pepper spray, or a taser to subdue someone? This is another example of excessive force that some people in our community approve of.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • bubbah

      your a fool. this is definitely excessive use of force.

      December 10, 2012 at 9:13 pm | Report abuse |
  11. spark

    They yelled "He's coming right at us!" so it's legit.

    December 10, 2012 at 4:01 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Jim

    If he did not have a weapon I don't understand why he was shot and killed.

    December 10, 2012 at 4:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • N. Unya Bbwaqs

      Purely speculation, of course, but a wholly cynical guess would be that he was probably able to defend himself logically and verbally, which got the cops' egos all in a twist, so they decided to beat him down to show him who was "boss", but he was also able to defend himself physically, too; possibly put one or two of them down, possibly knocked one of them the h3ll out, then rest of them decided to punish him for it by killing him. Then they claimed "we were afraid for our lives," knowing that nothing would happen to them.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike land

      Cops don't do hand to hand combat. Because a cop carries a firearm, and if that firearm gets into the hands of the perp, they can kill the cop, bystanders, and themselves. That's a scenario that happens and in police academy, they are trained to NOT get into a fight if avoidable. Second, you don't know the training of the perp. Take Trevon Martin's case. Zimmerman didn't know he was about to engage a person who trained in mix martial arts. Had he known that, he would have just made the call and then left the area. Cops don't know your level of training. If you want to pick a fight with a law officer, you are probably going to get shot. They just do not do hand to hand combat, its totally against their training.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:26 pm | Report abuse |
  13. student at csusb

    The details are this. This guy was out of control and really doing some damage to those trying to calm him down. With other students around, and yes, one of my friends, it was not for the safety of the officers, but for the other students. This dude was out of control and he would have done some harm to another student. To say this was excessive force, no. Cops did was required to protect others. Yes, I heard the commotion. Yes, I heard the gun shots. Did I witness it... not, but heard from many who did what happen. Good job CSUSB Police and thanks for being there!

    December 10, 2012 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • student at csusb

      And another fact that I am not reading, the individual killed, he already had some run in's with law enforcement on campus and from what I gather, I few professors on campus too. A few months back, by the Jack Brown building, he made a scene that required police to come out. I witness that one. Its a shame, but the feeling on the campus is the police did the right thing. Myself, CSUSB is a very safe campus and I mean a very safe campus. Police presents is always a few minutes away and because of this, it makes it a safe campus.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ben

      You're a troll. No college student wants cops around.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • student at csusb

      Troll.. whatever. You have never been outside the campus of CSUSB have you? San Bernardino, especially downtown or south of Kendall is not the best.

      December 10, 2012 at 5:16 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Phiber

    I'm confused. It says he was shot by "Campus Police". The next paragraph states "Police said officers responded to University Village, an off-campus student dormitory". Why were campus police at an off-campus dorm instead of the local cops?

    December 10, 2012 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • student at csusb

      The off campus dorms are across the street from the campus and are part of the campus. The CSUSB patrol this area too. As with the roads leading up the canyons and around the campus.

      December 10, 2012 at 4:52 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Robin O. Anderson

    There should be improved, possibly continuing, gun training for cops so as to increase their accuracy; allowing for increased ability to make non-lethal shots.

    December 10, 2012 at 4:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Tom

      You clearly are clueless. You don't draw a lethal weapon to make a non-lethal shot. A little too much TV, maybe?

      December 10, 2012 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
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