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USC student groups alter policies following Halloween shooting

PHOTOS: Shooting at USC Halloween party

The USC Program Board will increase scrutiny of events it cosponsors and the university's Black Student Assembly will stop hosting parties for the remainder of the semester after last week's on-campus shooting, student leaders announced Monday.

The Wednesday night shooting, which left four wounded -- including former Crenshaw High School football star Geno Hall -- took place at an on-campus party co-sponsored by the Black Student Assembly and an outside group, LA Hype.

In a letter to the Daily Trojan, USC's student newspaper, leaders of the Black Student Assembly, Undergraduate Student Government and the Program Board said they are working with the administrators to increase safety at on-campus events.

PHOTOS: Shooting at USC Halloween party

"The Black Student Assembly has decided to suspend hosting parties and other socially driven events for the remainder of the semester," states the letter, signed by BSA Executive Director Lamar Gary, USC Program Board Executive Director Juan Espinoza and Undergraduate Student Government President Michael Geragos. "Program Board will also increase the scrutiny placed on outside organizations during the review process of co-sponsorship."

Los Angeles police and USC officials said the shooting stemmed from an argument between two people who were not affiliated with USC. The gunman opened fire on Hall, who was hit several times but is expected to survive. Three other bystanders, none of them students, also suffered wounds not considered life-threatening.

On Thursday, police arrested Brandon Spencer on suspicion of attempted murder in connection with the shooting. As of Monday morning, Spencer had yet to be charged, according to the Los Angeles County district attorney's office.

The shooting, which occured in the heart of campus, rattled students and could prompt changes to the university's open campus policy. USC President C.L. Max Nikias told The Times in an email last week that he plans to announce policy changes this week.

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— Wesley Lowery

Follow Wesley Lowery on Twitter and Google+.

Photo: USC Department of Public Safety officers on bikes patrol on campus Thursday where four people were shot during a Halloween party. Credit: Brian van der Brug / Los Angeles Times

 
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