Manhunt intensifies for suspect who allegedly gunned down University of Utah student

A manhunt is intensifying in Salt Lake City after a University of Utah international student was gunned down near campus Monday night, according to police and the university.

ChenWei Guo was killed in a “senseless, random act of violence,” University of Utah President David Pershing said in a statement this morning.

Pershing said Guo was parked near the gate in Red Butte Canyon, near the University of Utah, when he was shot dead during an apparent carjacking attempt.

The Salt Lake City Police Department identified the suspect as 24-year-old Austin Boutain and said he is considered armed and dangerous.

According to The Associated Press, University of Utah Police Chief Dale Brophy said Boutain’s injured wife came to the school alleging that her husband badaulted her while they were camping in Red Butte Canyon. The University of Utah Police did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.

Salt Lake City Police told ABC News this morning that authorities, including SWAT members, are searching the foothills above campus for the suspect. Police said the canyon is closed today.

PHOTO: Police officers search for a gunman near the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, Oct. 30, 2017. Police say a deadly shooting occurred near the school campus on Monday.Rick Egan/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP
Police officers search for a gunman near the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, Oct. 30, 2017. Police say a deadly shooting occurred near the school campus on Monday.
PHOTO: A police officer searches for a gunman near the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, Oct. 30, 2017. Police say a deadly shooting occurred near the school campus on Monday. Rick Egan/The Salt Lake Tribune via AP
A police officer searches for a gunman near the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, Oct. 30, 2017. Police say a deadly shooting occurred near the school campus on Monday.

Pershing said that university police “are confident that our campus is secure.”

Guo, a pre-computer science major, also worked as a peer adviser in the school’s International Student and Scholar Services Office and had “a promising future,” Pershing said.

“We have been in contact with ChenWei’s family in China and they are understandably devastated by the loss of their son. We are working to bring them to Utah as soon as possible and will offer them all the badistance we can,” Pershing said. “We have canceled clbades today in respect of ChenWei and the impact this violent event has had on our campus community.”

Pershing said counseling is available to students, staff and faculty.


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