Suspect in Maryland newspaper shooting charged with 5 counts of murder
06/29/2018 6:56 am PDT
ANNAPOLIS, Md. -- (WBFF) -- First-degree murder charges were filed Friday against a man with a grudge against Maryland's capital newspaper after police said he shot his way into the newsroom, killing four journalists and a staffer and wounding two others.
Jarrod Warren Ramos was swiftly arrested, interrogated and jailed pending a 10:30 a.m. hearing in Annapolis. No defense attorney was listed in online court records, but one note suggests he could be represented by a public defender. Another classifies him as "recalcitrant." Investigators said earlier that he was uncooperative.
Acting Police Chief William Krampf of Anne Arundel County said the gunman "looked for his victims" Thursday in the newsroom of The Capital Gazette in Annapolis. "This person was prepared today to come in, this person was prepared to shoot people," Krampf said.
Ramos, 38, has a well-documented history of harassing the paper's journalists that began years ago after the Gazette reported about his criminal conviction in a harassment case.
The attack began with a shotgun blast that shattered the glass entrance of the open newsroom. Journalists crawled under desks and sought other hiding places, describing agonizing minutes of terror as they heard his footsteps and the repeated blasts of the weapons. Police said he also was armed with smoke grenades.
It's unclear what immediate motivation the gunman may have had. Investigators were reviewing his social media postings and searching his apartment in Laurel, Maryland, searching for clues.
"The shooter has not been very forthcoming, so we don't have any information yet on motive," Anne Arundel County Executive Steve Schuh said.
Those killed included Rob Hiaasen, 59, the paper's assistant managing editor and brother of novelist Carl Hiaasen. Carl Hiaasen said he was "devastated and heartsick" at losing his brother, "one of the most gentle and funny people I've ever known." Also slain were Gerald Fischman, editorial page editor; features reporter Wendi Winters; reporter John McNamara, and sales assistant Rebecca Smith. The newspaper said two other employees had non-life threatening injuries and were later released from a hospital.
"There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you're under your desk and then hear the gunman reload," tweeted Phil Davis, the paper's courts and crime reporter. In a later interview appearing on the paper's online site, Davis likened the newspaper office to a "war zone."
FULL STORY: SUSPECT CHARGED: Five counts of 1st degree murder in Annapolis shooting - WBFF
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