A former University of Central Florida student still living on campus drafted plans to kill others in his dormitory but changed his mind early Monday and took only his own life, police said.
James Oliver Seevakumaran, 30, was found in his dorm room in Tower 1, a seven-story structure near the UCF Arena. He died from a single shot to the head fired by one of his newly purchased guns, police said.
UCF Police Chief Richard Beary said writings found in his dorm room indicated "there was a planned attack."
When they searched his room, officers found an assault weapon, a handgun, hundreds of rounds of ammunition and, in a backpack, handmade explosives. The assault rifle had a magazine capable of holding 28 bullets, officials said.
"It could have been a very bad day for everyone here," Beary said. "Let's just face it: One shooting is bad enough. Multiples is unthinkable."
Police suspect Seevakumaran, of Lake Mary, pulled a fire alarm in Tower 1 shortly after midnight and planned to shoot or injure other students as they evacuated, Beary said. But they believe he changed his mind, returned to his room and killed himself.
That may have happened because he first pulled a gun on one of his roommates, who then escaped to a bathroom and called 911. The sound of police arriving may have prompted Seevakumaran to alter his plans.
A roommate, Beary said, described Seevakumaran as someone who had "anti-social" tendencies, but not as someone he suspected of violence nor someone known to have weapons. His only other involvement with police seemed to be for a traffic violation and an accusation he sold alcohol to someone who was underage.
UCF officials said Seevakumaran had not paid the university for this semester and was no longer an enrolled student. But UCF tried to take a "compassionate approach" and did not immediately remove him from the campus residence, where he lived on the third floor of the building. However, the university was in the process of removing him, officials said.