Officials have identified the Hofstra University student killed in yesterday's early morning home invasion as Andrea Rebello, 21, a junior from Tarrytown, NY. Rebello's identical twin sister, Jessica, is also a student at Hofstra, and was with Rebello when an armed intruder allegedly broke into their off-campus sorority house, holding the sisters, one other unidentified woman and an unidentified male hostage until the police arrived and a shootout ensued.
Rebello's friends and fellow classmates were shocked and saddened to hear of her death. "Today is the last day of finals and this should be a happy day on campus; but it's not," freshman Scott Aharoni told ABC News. "It's really sad." A public relations major and a member of the Beta Sigma Phi sorority, Rebello was described as a fun-loving, "really nice" girl," and a hard worker. "She had a devotion to family and sense of purpose and of opportunity," Carol Conklin-Spillane, Rebello's former principal at Sleepy Hollow High School in Tarrytown, told the Post. In Rebello's high school yearbook, she quoted Bob Marley: "Love the life you live, live the life you love."
Details surrounding Rebello's death are still hazy, but cops say they received a 911 call about the invasion after the intruder let one of the women being held hostage go to an ATM. They responded to the call, and ended up having a shootout with the intruder at around 2:30 a.m. "I heard the screams and then I looked outside and there’s police officers everywhere. And it was a girl screaming. It was the most horrifying scream I’ve heard in my entire life,” neighbor Victoria Dehel told CBS 2. “I told my boyfriend, I said ‘Frank, I think someone just got murdered by the way the scream was, that was so awful."
The school held a private memorial service yesterday, and Jessica Rebello, who was unharmed in the shooting, is home with her parents in Tarrytown. It is still unclear how many bullets were fired, or who fired the shot that killed Rebello; the intruder, who had been wearing a ski mask, was also killed. "It's my daughter, my baby daughter," Rebello's father, Fernando Rebello, told the Journal News yesterday. "She was so beautiful. I'm so confused. I don't know what to do."