In a recent newsroom shooting claiming as many as five lives, the shooting suspect has finally been identified as Jarrod W. Ramos. According to CNN, it’s a strong possibility that this was not random:
“The suspect in the shooting is Jarrod Warren Ramos, according to multiple law enforcement sources. Police are outside an address connected to Ramos in Laurel, Maryland. Ramos has a connection to the paper. He filed a defamation claim in 2012 against the paper but the case was dismissed.”
In his complaint, he admitted to harassment against Eric Hartley, a former staff writer and columnist for the newspaper.
Ramos even named his Twitter account after Mr. Hartley, and threatened him directly.
— Jarrod W. Ramos (@EricHartleyFrnd) February 8, 2015
Even a cursory view of his official complaint raises questions about his mental stability, as he vacillates between quoting The Epic of Gilgamesh, supposedly ancient Chinese proverbs, and case law.
“The judicial penalty for my misconduct was $500. What of yours, Marquardt? What of yours, Hartley? How long can you prance on others, so high and mightily, your hooves smeared with tar? How dare you?
“Much like a life, what is the price of a name? Are these even two different questions? Your counsel just wants to chat? How dishonorable were your intentions? Did you dismiss him? Get serious. Whatever piece of you Tanko took, that was only a skirmish. You’re not ready for this war.”
Ramos continued with his jarring and violent language on his Twitter timeline, stating that Maryland Special Appeals Court Judge Charles E. Moylan should “kill himself.”
Critics of President Trump have attributed the shooting to the president’s consistent demonization of the press, ostensibly referring to his repeated remarks about the “Failing New York Times” and his going so far as to call the press “The enemy of the people.” Trump’s critics suggest his virulent animus towards newspapers and journalists in general and sometimes specifically, contributes to a very dangerous climate for news organizations across the country.
On Ramos’s Twitter timeline, he references the newspaper and President Trump, seemingly issuing a veiled threat.
The president has responded to the incident, offering very little other than “thoughts and prayers.”
Prior to departing Wisconsin, I was briefed on the shooting at Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. Thank you to all of the First Responders who are currently on the scene.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 28, 2018
Even Trump ally Milo Yiannopolous found himself in hot water over the shooting, after a recent interaction with journalists where, according to Davis Richardson of the Observer, he claimed that he “can’t wait for the vigilante squads to start gunning journalists down on sight.” Yiannopolous has since claimed to be joking.
Going forward, few details are known about the Annapolis incident, but will be published as they come out.
Image provided via Twitter screenshot