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The Daily Tar Heel

One faculty member killed in shooting, suspect charged with first degree murder


An N.C. State Trooper searches for evidence outside of Caudill Laboratories following the shooting that took place on UNC's campus on Monday, Aug. 28, 2023. 

Updated Aug. 29 12:05 p.m.: According to the warrant for Qi's arrest obtained by The Daily Tar Heel, the victim has been identified as Zijie Yan, an associate professor in the UNC Department of Applied Physical Sciences. The warrant also notes that Qi used a 9mm handgun. Qi is being held at the Orange County Jail without bail.

Updated Aug. 29 10:15 a.m.: UNC graduate student Tailei Qi, 34, was arrested and charged with first-degree murder and possessing a firearm on educational property at 12:38 a.m. this morning following the events of Monday. The name of the faculty member who was killed has not been officially released.

Updated Aug. 29 9:15 a.m.: An Alert Carolina message announced UNC has been updated to a Condition 3 until 11:59 p.m. Classes remain canceled, and non-mandatory operations are suspended. Non-mandatory employees do not have to work or use paid leave unless otherwise informed by their supervisor. 

The University also set up a hotline for students, faculty, staff, parents and the community to address concerns and questions at 919-918-1999. 

Updated Aug. 28 5:42 p.m.: One faculty member was killed in today's shooting in Caudill Laboratories, according to a campus-wide email sent by Chancellor Kevin Guskiewicz. The University will operate under Condition 2 until midnight tomorrow, meaning all classes and campus activities will be canceled. 

Updated Aug. 28 at 4:15 p.m.: An Alert Carolina message has announced, "All clear. All clear. Resume normal activities."

Updated Aug. 28 at 4 p.m.: According to WRAL reporter Mark Boyle, a suspect is in police custody. Boyle posted a video of the arrest on X.

Updated Aug. 28 at 3:51 p.m.: CHCCS received "the all clear" from the authorities. The school district will begin the dismissal process for elementary and middle schools. High schools will dismiss at 4 p.m. as usual. All activities after school are cancelled for the day and afterschool care will take place indoors.

UNC students are advised to remain in place, according to a 3:51 p.m. Alert Carolina message. Though, many students and faculty have been seen leaving campus buildings.

Updated Aug. 28 at 3:15 p.m.: All classes and UNC events have been canceled for the rest of the day, according to an Alert Carolina message. Students and those on campus are advised to remain in place. 

UNC Hospitals has not received any patients in relation to the situation, spokesperson Alan Wolf said.

Updated Aug. 28 at 2:35 p.m.: UNC Police posted a photo of a "person of interest” in the active situation on X.

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Updated Aug. 28 at 2:25 p.m.: According to an Alert Carolina message, a suspect is still at large.

A lane of Interstate 40 has been closed. Some campus buildings are being evacuated, according to students.

Updated Aug. 28 at 2:03 p.m.: A suspect is being questioned in police custody but their handcuffs have been removed, according to ABC11's live broadcast.

According to UNC Media Relations, the active situation is ongoing and the campus remains on lockdown.

Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools also issued a security alert that the district will be in "Secure Mode," meaning building doors will be locked and no one can enter or exit schools until an all-clear is given from authorities. As of 2:15 p.m., Secure Mode remains in effect. Instruction is allowed to continue as normal. Today is the first day of the 2023-24 school year for CHCCS.

Updated Aug. 28 at 1:50 p.m.: An Alert Carolina message sent at 1:50 p.m. confirmed that the shelter in place order is still in effect. 

Updated Aug. 28 at 1:35 p.m.: According to Orange County Fire and EMS radio, there was a report of at least one shot fired in Caudill Labs on South Road with at least one person wounded.

A suspect, a male in a gray shirt, is now in police custody. Students are sheltering in place as law enforcement officers and medical officials respond to the scene.

An Emergency Alert Carolina was sent to University members at 1:04 p.m. alerting campus of an “armed and dangerous person on or near campus."

According to the email, UNC Police advises all students to go inside immediately, close windows and doors and to wait until further notice. 

UNC Media Relations said they have no further information at this time.

This is a developing story, check back here for updates.

@abbypenderr | @emmymrtin

@dailytarheel |

Emmy Martin

Emmy Martin is the 2023-24 editor-in-chief of The Daily Tar Heel. She has previously served as the DTH's city & state editor and summer managing editor. Emmy is a junior pursuing a double major in journalism and media and information science.