A former Campbell University freshman faces felony possession of stolen weapons charges after a standoff in Buies Creek.
Jared Dale Knight, 24, had bail set at $400,000 in a Harnett County courtroom Nov. 10. He was involved in a standoff with county deputies on the north side of campus for about four hours Nov. 9.
Campbell expelled Knight and banned him from the campus after the incident, which forced a lockdown on the campus for at least three hours. A SWAT team member finally was able to persuade Knight to surrender. Knight’s Facebook page said he was studying youth ministry at Campbell.
Knight had locked himself in his home located across the street from Campbell’s Lundy-Fetterman School of Business. Deputies had tried to serve arrest papers on charges alleging that Knight stole merchandise from a Fuquay-Varina gun shop, where he was employed.
Knight had been arrested in Fuquay-Varina Nov. 8 on a charge of larceny by employee. A $1,500 AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle from Sovereign Guns was missing, and the owner said Knight was shown on video stashing the weapon in his bag. The owner said he realized six more guns – two rifles and four handguns – were missing Nov. 9. Investigators were dispatched to Buies Creek to question Knight, who had been released after posting $3,000 bond.
Larry Rollins, Harnett County sheriff, said Knight slipped out of handcuffs as he was being placed in custody. He ran to a bedroom where guns were stored and locked the door.
Knight’s father, Daimon, of Lubbock, Texas, said his son is an Iraq war veteran whom he believes has post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Military officials said in court records that there was no evidence linking Knight’s PTSD to his service in Iraq.
Knight received a bad-conduct discharge from the Air Force in January 2009 for taking about $10,600 in military property for his own use. He was sentenced to eight months at Dyess Air Force Base in Texas.
Campbell conducted a background check on Knight before allowing him to rent the house on campus, but the military charges didn’t surface in the check.
Students, faculty and staff learned of the lockdown through the campus’ emergency notification system, which sent direct messages to university email accounts and cell phones. Students were also notified through social network sites and Campbell’s main website. The school updated its emergency procedures following the 2007 shootings at Virginia Tech.
Although Campbell prohibits possession of firearms on campus, university spokesman Britt Davis said the decision to kick Knight out of school and off campus was a direct result of the standoff and not because he violated university policy.
“In light of the charges he faces in Wake County and Harnett County, the administration felt it was in the best interest of the university and the community that he be dismissed and prohibited from returning to university property,” Davis said.
Campbell’s decision means that, if Knight posts bond, he won’t be allowed back into the house he rents on campus – the site of the standoff.