Howard University student shot, killed in D.C.

Howard University student Omar Sykes, 22, was shot and killed during a street robbery near campus Thursday night. (Courtesy Metropolitan Police Department)

WASHINGTON (AP) — D.C. police say a Howard University student was fatally shot and a second student was beaten in a robbery attempt.

The two students were walking in the 700 block of Fairmont Street near the campus in Northwest Washington late Thursday night when they were approached by two men. Police say one of the men pulled out a gun and shot one of the students.

Officers called to the scene found the student suffering from multiple gunshot wounds including at least one to the chest. Police say he was taken to a local hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

Police identified the student killed as Omar Sykes, 22, of D.C.

Police say the second student was beaten. He was taken to the hospital with injuries that are not thought to be life-threatening.

News of the Sykes death has shocked the campus, says says Justin Miles, a senior who has known Stykes since they arrived at Howard University.

“You see how close this is to campus,” he says, standing at the corner of Fairmont Street and Georgia Avenue. “This could have been anybody.”

Miles was in the entertainment group Noble Black Society with Sykes.

“He was serious about his grades, he was serious about school and he was a pleasant person to be around,” says Miles.

Sykes’ service fraternity is planning a candlelight vigil on campus to remember their friend Friday evening.

“Skyes was committed to serving his community and was an advocate for social justice. He has been a member of Alpha Phi Omega International Service Fraternity since spring 2012,” the university said in a statement.

Anyone with information about the case is asked to call D.C. police at 202-727-9099. Anonymous information may be sent to the department’s Text Tip Line by sending a text message to 50411.

WTOP’s Andrew Mollenbeck and The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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