updated 10/24/2007 5:28:27 AM ET 2007-10-24T09:28:27

A Delaware State University student wounded in a campus shooting last month died of her injuries on Tuesday, her family said.

Shalita K. Middleton, a 17-year-old freshman biology major from Washington, D.C., died about 3:30 p.m. at Christiana Hospital in Newark, according to a family statement released by the university.

"She struggled valiantly over the last several weeks and she was an inspiration," the family said. "Ultimately, however, the internal injuries that she suffered were in the end too critical to overcome."

Middleton was shot in the abdomen when gunfire broke out on campus Sept. 21. Nathaniel Pugh, another 17-year-old student from Washington, suffered an ankle wound. Freshman Loyer D. Braden, 18, is accused of shooting them.

University President Allen Sessoms said the community was "grieving and deeply saddened" by Middleton's death.

"Our thoughts are with her family and friends at this most difficult time," Sessoms said in a statement. "I know I speak for all our DSU family in offering our heartfelt condolences."

University spokesman Carlos Holmes said two administrators from the school were with Middleton's family when she died.

Campus police had hoped to interview the cheerleader about what happened on the night of the shooting, but Holmes said they never got the opportunity.

Braden, a freshman from East Orange, N.J., is being held in lieu of $92,000 bail on charges of attempted murder, assault, among other offenses. With Middleton's death, Braden now faces a possible murder charge.

His attorney, James Liguori, did not immediately return a telephone message left with his answering service Tuesday.

Jason Miller, a spokesman for the attorney general, declined to comment on charges against Braden being amended.

Holmes said the school likely would hold a memorial service for Middleton.

Copyright 2007 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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