Police gunfire kills Hofstra University student, official says

Posted at 3:12 PM, May 19, 2013
and last updated 2013-05-19 17:12:52-04

By Chelsea J. Carter and Chris Kokenes

NEW YORK (CNN) — A Hofstra University student who died during a confrontation between a home invasion suspect and authorities was killed by police gunfire, a Nassau County, New York, police spokeswoman said Saturday.

Police fired eight shots at the intruder, who authorities say was holding a gun to the head of Andrea Rebello, 21, during a home invasion robbery Friday at an off-campus house in Uniondale.

One of the shots hit Rebello in the head, killing her, police spokeswoman Maureen Roach said.

Also killed was the intruder, whom authorities identified as Dalton Smith, 30, of Hempstead. He was struck seven times.

Authorities say Smith was wearing a mask. He invaded the home Rebello shared with her twin sister and two others during the predawn hours on Friday.

At some point, a female roommate of the twins was able to leave the home and call police, a police spokesman told CNN on Friday.

When a police officer arrived, Smith was holding a gun to Rebello’s head, Roach said.

He told the officer he was going to kill Rebello, and then turned the handgun toward the officer, she said.

The officer, fearing for his life, drew his gun and fired, Roach said.

Authorities have not identified the officer.

At the time of the shooting, Smith was wanted for jumping parole, police said.

He was on parole for first-degree robbery and had an “extensive” arrest history that includes robbery, assault, and promoting prison contraband, said police in Nassau County.

A warrant for his arrest was issued April 25 for allegedly absconding from parole, police said

Rebello’s high school principal, Carol Conklin-Spillane, said the twins’ home community in Westchester, New York, was heartbroken.

She described Rebello as a fun-loving, personable and self-aware young woman.

Her parents, Fernando and Nella Rebello, are closely tied to the Portuguese community, and always worked to create opportunities for their children, Conklin-Spillane said.

Rebello, a junior, was majoring in public relations.

Hofstra University said it is offering counseling to students.

“Our hearts and minds and our thoughts and prayers are with her family, her friends and her classmates,” the university said in a statement.

A funeral mass is planned for Wednesday.

CNN’s Michael Martinez, Brittany Brady and AnneClaire Stapleton contributed to this report.
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