Three members of the University of Virginia football team were gunned down on the Charlottesville campus late Sunday night and two more were injured, according to police and university officials.
This morning, after an extensive overnight manhunt and a shelter-in-place order for local residents, police announced they had a suspect, Christopher Darnell Jones Jr., in custody. Jones is an active student at UVA, and was a running back on the Cavaliers football team back in 2018.
The three players murdered were junior receiver Lavel Davis Jr. of Dorchester, S.C., junior receiver Devin Chandler of Huntersville, N.C., and junior defensive end/linebacker D’Sean Perry of Miami.
Jones had been reported to school officials in September after making comments about owning a gun, though it does not appear he issued any threats at the time, according to CNN. UVA Police Chief Tim Longo said Jones had been involved in a “prior criminal incident” involving a concealed weapon, which took place last February. Longo said Jones was obligated to report that incident to campus police but failed to do so.
The two other students who had been shot were taken to the hospital. One is in good condition and the other in critical condition, according to authorities.
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“Let me say how deeply sorry I am for the victims and for their family and friends,” University of Virginia President Jim Ryan said.
According to Ryan, the shooting occurred on a charter bus after students returned to campus from a field trip.
Police have charged Jones with three counts of second-degree murder.
“Although we do not yet have a full understanding of the motive and circumstances surrounding these events,” Ryan said during Monday’s news conference, “police are investigating as we speak.”
“This is an unimaginably sad day for our community. The entire university community is grieving this morning. My heart is broken for the victims and their families and for all those who knew and loved them, and they are all in my prayers. As I’ve said before, when I see our students, I see my own kids, and I can not imagine anything worse for a parent than losing a child.”
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