NEW HAVEN, CT—Wednesday afternoon, beloved Yale community leader Daniel “Handsome Dan” XIX was the target of an assassination attempt during his morning escorted constitutional through Cross Campus. The assassin in question, Timothy Dwight’s own Ned Allen Cabino ’22, was apprehended and taken into custody by the Yale Police Department, where he awaits sentencing.

According to available witnesses, Cabino leapt down upon the canine from a tree, brandishing a revolver. Luckily, Dan’s bodyguards successfully wrested the weapon from his grasp, but not before gunshots left two dead and another hospitalized. Handsome Dan himself left the incident seemingly unfazed, yet reportedly itching for a belly rub. 

Shortly after the arrest, a manifesto was automatically uploaded to Cabino’s blog, entitled “I Will Not Roll Over.” The fifty-eight page document sheds light on Cabino’s motives, describing his vision of a post-Handsome Dan XIX world: “My dream is to one day live in a world free of the tyranny and oppression of the Dannite Regime. There is nothing handsome about monarchy.”

Enhanced YPD interrogation techniques have linked Cabino to the Crimson Paw, a secret society best known for operating as the militant wing of the TD separatist movement. “These folks are bad news,” a YPD detective tasked with monitoring the group told us. “There’s nothing more dangerous than someone willing to sacrifice their life for a cause.”

Despite these discoveries, Yale administration has opted not to expand Dan XIX’s security detail, in a ploy some say is intended to hurry the arrival of the much-more-marketable Handsome Dan XX. 

“Dan knew the risks of this job when he signed up,” said Yale Human President Peter Salovey. “We can’t let our principles be twisted, nor even budged, by fear. These people are terrorists, not vacuums. Besides, XX sells more T-shirts than XIX. That’s just math.” 

This lenience has drawn the ire of many, including Dan XIX’s predecessor. A statement from the office of retired mascot Dan XVIII condemned the decision as cowardly: “If this happened under our watch, there would be no mercy. We would declare war on Harvard by sunset, entangling selective private universities nationwide in a complex web of alliances resulting in mass destruction and death. Woof.” 

Still, the assassination attempt has had its benefits for Yale’s most notorious bulldog. In a shotgun poll conducted in the following days, Dan XIX became the first Dan in history to break a 54% approval rating, with nearly six out of ten respondents classifying him as a “good” or “very good” boy.

—B. Hollander-Bodie