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Task force investigates slaying of Auburn student

  • Story Highlights
  • Task force investigating death of Auburn University student Lauren Burk
  • Burk found shot on side of road; later died at hospital
  • Burk's car found minutes later engulfed in flames in campus parking lot
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(CNN) -- A task force made up of several agencies is pursuing leads in the shooting death of an 18-year-old Auburn University student.

Lauren Burk, a freshman from suburban Atlanta, Georgia, was found shot on a road about five miles north of campus Tuesday night, Auburn University said in a statement. She later died at a hospital.

About 20 minutes after police responded to a call reporting Burk's injuries, authorities received a report that her car was on fire in a parking lot on campus.

Assistant Chief Tommy Dawson of the Auburn Police Department said on Thursday authorities "do not see an immediate danger or threat to the Auburn University campus or students."

Auburn University notified students of the death on Wednesday.

"There is no indication of additional danger to campus or student safety," the university said in a statement on its Web site. Video Watch Dawson encourage the public to help with the investigation »

"Even so, the Auburn Police Division and Auburn University officials are taking all necessary precautions, including increasing police presence, to ensure the safety of our students and employees."

In 2006, police found the burned-out car of a 24-year-old Auburn graduate. Authorities said that person is still missing.

Dawson said Thursday that police have no evidence to suggest a link between that case and Burk's death.

Dawson said investigators also have no evidence that Burk's slaying is tied to that of another female college student from Georgia who was found shot on a road near the University of North Carolina on Wednesday.


Chapel Hill Police Chief Brian Curran said his investigators had been in contact with their counterparts in Auburn.

"Even though the homicides on the surface may look similar, it appears to be unlikely that they're connected," Curran said. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

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