Police found a stash of ammunition and newspaper clippings about mass shootings in the padlocked bedroom of the Connecticut student accused of bringing loaded guns to the University of New Haven campus on Tuesday, authorities said.
William Dong, 22, is charged with illegal possession of an assault weapon, breach of peace and other counts after allegedly bringing two handguns and a rifle to the campus, prompting a lockdown and building-by-building search for him.
Police were first alerted after a 911 call reporting a man with a long gun walking toward campus, authorities said.
Officers found Dong on campus about 20 minutes later, with the two handguns. The Bushmaster assault rifle, illegal in Connecticut, was also found, although it was not immediately clear where.
Police also said they recovered several rifle magazines from a blue Toyota RAV4 that was parked near campus.
No shots were fired and no one was hurt, police said.
A student who said she was in a 12:15 p.m. biology class with Dong told NBC Connecticut he got up and left during a test, and the lockdown alert was issued shortly after that.
Dong's friends have called the incident a "huge misunderstanding" and said Dong was often confused about where he was allowed to carry guns.
Manuel Pallares, who described himself as Dong's best friend, said Dong carries weapons every day to protect himself while working at an armored truck company.
"I'm pretty sure he's not going to go out and shoot people," Pallares said. "He frowns on those people. He hates hearing about gun violence."
Fairfield police said Dong had gun permits for two handguns, but they haven't specified whether those are the same guns recovered.
"It was a shock," said Thomas Wething, who went to high school with Dong and watched police search his home from across the street. "I was questioning it at first."
Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara said police have previously responded to the home where Dong lives with family members, but did not elaborate. The other incidents were not as serious, he said.
"We want to know what his intent was up there because we want to know whether there was an intent here," MacNamara said.
Dong was being held on $500,000 bond. His family did not comment in court.