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Authorities: UAB psychology student found murdered in car

BIRMINGHAM (AP) — A college student found dead in her car early Monday outside a downtown elementary school was shot, authorities said.

The body of Kayla Nicole Fanaei, a 20-year-old psychology student at The University of Alabama at Birmingham, was discovered about 1 a.m. in a parking lot at Glen Iris Elementary School, which is near the university campus.

Birmingham police said the body was found after officers responded to a report of gunfire.

A professor said Fanaei was beginning to prepare a report on a study dealing with child pedestrian safety.

"We will certainly finish that in her memory," said David Schwebel, vice chairman of UAB's psychology department. "She was a very good student. She did top-level research in my lab."

UAB administrators notified students and workers by e-mail that a student had been found shot to death off campus.

"We were shocked and saddened to learn of Kayla Fanaei's untimely death," UAB President Carol Z. Garrison said in a statement. "Our hearts go out to all of her family and friends here at UAB and elsewhere."

Schwebel said Fanaei, who finished as the runner-up in a beauty pageant in 2005, planned to attend graduate school.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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