Asia McGowan: Youtuber killed by mentally ill stalker at Michigan school
Asia McGowan, 20, was an aspiring actress, dancer and popular Youtuber who often scolded commenters about degrading her online. She was worried about Internet life spilling into her real life -- and for good reason. Police say one of those commenters, Anthony Powell, 29, pulled out a shotgun and murdered McGowan in an otherwise empty classroom at Henry Ford Community College in Dearborn, Michigan in April 2009.
Police described the shooting as a murder-suicide. They say Powell suffered from mental illness. The bodies were found by investigators in an unused room on campus.
"Nothing like this has ever occurred on campus," Marjorie Swan, vice president/controller at the school, told MLive.com.
It appears that McGowan tried to flee her attacker once the shooting began.
Christian Plonka, 12, a middle schooler who just happened to be on campus for a theater program, told MLive that he heard the gun go off. "I heard one gunshot, and I saw someone getting pulled back into the room they were in," he said. "I was rattled."
During the shooting, police ordered a school lockdown, during which they heard an additional gunshot.
"We were in the building when we heard the shotgun blast, and when we finally got to that room, we had two deceased parties," Dearborn Deputy Chief Gregg Brightonsaid at a news conference, CNN reports. "We believe this is a murder-suicide."
Asia McGowan was one of four siblings. She graduated from Ecorse High School.
"She was beautiful, an aspiring actress and dancer," her father Turahn McGowan, told the Michigan Daily.