ASU Gunman Charged, Police Say Originally Intended To Shoot Others

Dec 11, 2015

Brad Bartelt and his girlfriend Connie Hampton, who has been arrested on a weapons charge.

The man accused of prompting a lockdown at Arkansas State University by bringing a shotgun on campus has now been formally charged. Meanwhile authorities Friday released new details of the incident.

A Craighead County judge set bond at $50,000 cash for Brad Kenneth Bartelt. The Jonesboro man was charged with aggravated assault, terrorist threats, criminal possession of explosive material and carrying a firearm in a publicly owned facility.

During the hearing, with Bartelt appearing via video link from the county jail, the judge denied a request for the suspect to be represented by a public defender. His next hearing was set for Jan. 29.

In a report, Jonesboro police said Bartelt told officers he initially wanted to shoot other people at the school, but "realized murder would be wrong, so he was going to kill himself."

He’s said to have told an officer he was upset over an injury sustained while training to drive an 18-wheeler at ASU's Newport campus three years ago.

Bartelt also told police he was on several psychiatric medications and painkillers and said he "was seeing demons in the woods around his house."

The report said Bartelt called 911 after driving onto lawn in front of ASU's student union, telling dispatchers he was on campus with a gun. Police say Bartelt had a shotgun and containers of gasoline and propane with him when he drove his truck onto a plaza near the student union. He eventually surrendered and no one was hurt.

Meanwhile the suspect’s live-in girlfriend has been arrested for being a felon in possession of a firearm. During a search of their home, police say they found an AR-15 assault rifle, ammunition and several knives.

41-year-old Connie Francis Hampton has been on parole since last year because of a 2013 arrest for manufacturing, delivery and possession of a controlled substance, according to the Department of Community Correction.

At the ASU campus, Chancellor Tim Hudson issued a statement Friday commending the strength of first responders, students and staff after Thursday's incident. He ended the statement: "Together we rise; together we thrive."

The is a compilation of Associated Press reports.