Update: Dead CSU student, shooter identified in Thursday morning shooting

Rachel Telljohn and Stuart Smith



A Colorado State University student, Savannah McNealy, died in a shooting early Thursday morning along with Tristian Kemp when they were dropped off with one other at an apartment complex. The three were shot by Michael Zamora before he killed himself, Fort Collins Police Services confirmed. 

McNealy, 22, was a senior art major set to graduate in December. She was also an employee of Rocky Mountain Student Media Corporation, which operates the Collegian. Kemp, 26, was an airfare veteran.

A third victim was injured, and has now been identified as Megan Dierker, a student at CU Boulder who was a childhood friend of Savannah and came up to Fort Collins to celebrate her birthday.

Fort Collins police remove a body from the scene of a fatal shooting Thursday morning. The suspected homicide occurred early that morning at 720 City Park west of CSU’s main campus. (Davis Bonner | Collegian)

The shooter, who committed suicide, has been identified as Michael Zamora, 30, of Fort Collins, according to the Larimer County Medical Examiner’s Office

The three victims took a Lyft back to an apartment complex west of campus at 720 City Park Avenue Thursday morning. Shortly after the group was dropped off, Zamora approached the group in the parking lot and began shooting just before 2 a.m., killing McNealy and Kemp, and injuring Dierker, before killing himself. 

Three guns were found at the scene, a handgun and two rifles that are registered to Zamora.

An eyewitness, who wished to remain anonymous and lives in the same apartment complex, heard approximately 10 loud gunshots around 2 a.m. The eyewitness said they then heard a woman screaming loudly and crying for help.

After hearing the shots and screaming, the witness went out to the parking lot where they saw emergency services arrive. Police initially responded, mistakenly, to The District apartment complex. The eyewitness said they saw police jump over the fence when they realized the shooting was at 720 City Park Ave.

The witness overheard police talking about the incident.

“I heard one of the cops saying, ‘It was still a war zone’,” the witness said. 


Fort Collins Police Chief Terry Jones told the Denver Post in an interview Friday morning that the injured victim, who was transported to Medical Center of the Rockies, is being treated and is expected to survive.

“Right now we don’t know what the motive was,” Jones said in a phone interview with the Denver Post Friday morning. “We’re not ruling out a love triangle.”

Outside view of apartment with ladder.
Poudre Fire placed a ladder into the apartment complex near where the shooting on Oct. 19 took place. The ladder is for students to access apartments in lieu of using the parking lot for the complex. (Rachel Telljohn | Collegian)

Students woke up Thursday to a series of safety text alerts from the University. The first alert informed students to lock doors and remain inside. An all-clear was issued at 4:50 a.m. Prior to noon, the fire department placed a ladder leading to an apartment on the second floor of the complex so that residents may enter and exit the apartment, as the parking lot was closed due to the crime scene. 

A vigil was held for Savannah at Ram Walk outside of the on-campus stadium at 4:00 p.m. on Friday, October 20.

FCPS is currently investigating the incident and requests that anyone that may have information contact them at 970.491.6540.

This is a developing story. The article is being updated as new information becomes available. Last update was at 9:11 p.m., Oct. 22, 2017

Collegian reporter Rachel Telljohn can be reached at rtelljohn@collegian.com or on Twitter @racheltelljohnStuart Smith contributed to reporting and can be reached on Twitter @notstuartsmith.

CTV anchors Emma Iannacone and Grace Reader also contributed reporting. They may be reached at ctv@collegian.com.