By Vicki Daguerre-Bradford
“Why does all the bad stuff happen here?” asked a freshman engineering student at Virginia Tech just days after news broke about the supposed murder of Nicole Lovell on Jan. 27th by two VA Tech students.
The accused students, David Eisenhauer and Natalie Keepers, are both freshman engineering majors from neighboring towns in Maryland. Eisenhauer and Keepers became friends before attending Virginia Tech this fall and their friendship seems to have continued through their alleged planned abduction, murder and disposal of Lovell.
According to police reports, Eisenhauer and Lovell had been in contact over social media sites, a trend that new evidence suggests had been ongoing. Based on most recent evidence it appears that her relationship with Eisenhauer was the most extensive of her online contact with older men. When discussing Eisenhauer to her friends, Lovell called him her boyfriend.
When asked about Eisenhauer, a colleague from one of his labs said “when I met him he seemed a little odd but then again he is an engineer and most are, I didn’t think much of it.” Other students seemed to look back on the situation more retrospectively once information began to come out.
One of Eisenhauer’s lab partners noted that he was totally normal in class on Wednesday January 27th – the day Lovell was abducted and killed. However, the next day, presumably when Keepers and Eisenhauer were disposing of the body at their decided location, the lab group was supposed to meet. A student stated that Eisenhauer sent an email saying “he wouldn’t be able to make it because of sports stuff, which is weird because it was so late and he was the one who scheduled the meeting and missed it.”
Other students have since began to examine social outings in which they encountered the alleged killers, stating how uncomfortable they now were to have had pictures on social media with either of them. A resident student, who lives in Keeper’s dorm, said that Keepers took off to her boyfriend’s place after hearing about Eisnhauer being caught, which meant that, first the police, then the FBI had to remain stationed outside the dorm waiting for her to come back.
Students at Virginia Tech were once again put in the position of having their university put negatively in the news. However, as one student put it “people wonder how this stuff can happen here yet it’s the happiest campus. It’s because even though the school is so big we come together when bad stuff happens, we come together to support each other. Each hall was spoken to by councilors and people from the school so we know who to contact if we need anything.”