Appleton, WI- Elizabeth McPherson, a 19-year-old Lawrence University student, drew her last breath this morning in the Somerset Room, a popular campus study spot. According to a witness at the scene, Elizabeth walked into the room “wearing a really cute outfit.”
The witness continued, “She had this great cardigan-and-dress thing going on. The dress was, like, polka dots, and the cardigan was an amazing mustard yellow. I wish I could pull that off!”
However, the outfit had one fatal flaw. According to Elizabeth’s roommate, Elizabeth spent “a lot of time” that morning deciding which footwear best matched the ensemble, and she eventually chose a pair of expensive black boots she had received two Christmases ago from her parents. The boots’ soles were starting to wear out, but the shoes “sure did make a statement,” the roommate said.
Too loud a statement. The boots’ thick heels were like kryptonite for the Somerset Room’s hardwood flooring; the second they came into contact with those long strips of maple, a violent clunk reverberated through the room like a gunshot. Then a real gunshot rang out, because Elizabeth had been fatally shot.
The shooter, Hannah Sorrel, another Lawrence University student, is now in police custody. When asked about her side of the story, she reported she heard the boots from a table near the windows, where she had been parked for hours, studying for a midterm. She is a self-described “high-achieving chemistry student.” According to a sympathetic friend, Sorrel “just wanted an A in that class.”
We asked Ms. Sorrel what went through her head when she whipped out her personal handgun carried under a self-defence license.
“You have to understand one thing,” she said. “I was at a table by the windows. That’s literally across the room from the doors. And those boots were still so loud that I couldn’t focus on anything, and I just had to kill her. I’m glad I did it.”
We request that everyone respect Elizabeth’s family’s privacy at this trying time. – Nina Wilson