Man Facing 3 Charges after Paine College Shooting


AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — A man apprehended after a shooting at Paine College in Augusta is facing charges that include aggravated assault, authorities said Tuesday.

Richmond County Jail records show that 20-year-old Xavier Deanthony Cooper also faces charges of having a firearm or knife during a crime and having weapons in a school building. It's unclear if he has an attorney.

Monday's shooting — the second in two days at the private school — left Paine student JaJuan Baker, 21, with a gunshot wound to his head that authorities initially said was life-threatening. During a press conference Tuesday, Paine College officials said Baker is now in stable condition and is expected to recover.

Details on what led to the shooting are unclear. Sheriff's officials told local media outlets that the shooting Monday and a shooting on campus on Sunday afternoon may be connected to a shooting off campus. Sheriff's officials have said some type of fight likely led to the gunfire Monday, although it's still unclear what the suspect and victim may have argued about.

The gunfire also led to an hours-long lockdown of the campus and several other schools in the eastern Georgia city.

School officials had planned a prayer vigil for noon Tuesday, but issued a statement shortly after 11 a.m. saying it would be postponed. The statement gave no explanation for the delay, and messages left for school officials and the sheriff's department weren't immediately returned.

Paine, which enrolls just more than 800 students, is offering counseling to students in residence halls, and the school's commencement ceremonies are still scheduled for this weekend, Paine Vice President Brandon Brown said. He added that students are also being offered opportunities to take their final exams online.

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