Two Western Australian university students have been shot in New Orleans after allegedly approaching an unknown man in an attempt to buy drugs.
The Curtin University students have been identified as Jake Rovacsek and Toben Clements, both aged in their early 20s. Curtin vice-chancellor Deborah Terry said both students are in a stable condition.
Mr Rovacsek and Mr Clements, who were representing the WA School of Mines Wombats team in the Intercollegiate Mining Games in Montana, travelled to New Orleans after the games.
New Orleans police alleged that the men were in a bar off Bourbon Street on Tuesday morning when they tried to buy drugs. They followed a man to a waiting car and were then driven to the Algiers district, a police department press release said.
There, apparently, another man met them and demanded money. The Australians reportedly did not have any, so the man shot them both and fled in the car.
The students’ families are arranging to travel to the US, with the Curtin WA School of Mines director, Professor Sam Spearing, also heading to New Orleans to support the victims and their families. – Ashleigh Cant
Screengrab of Shepard Street, New Orleans from Reuters.