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UVA shootings: Christopher Jones ‘targeted’ football players but motive still unknown, court hears

What happened in University of Virginia shooting

Johanna Chisholm
Thursday 17 November 2022 03:30 GMT
University of Virginia Shooting: 3 killed, 2 injured; former football player named as suspect

The 22-year-old University of Virginia student accused of shooting dead three fellow students and wounding two others was denied bond on Wednesday as the court heard how he allegedly “targeted” specific victims in the deadly massacre.

Christopher Darnell Jones appeared via video conference at the Albemarle General District Court at 9am local time, as he was arraigned for three counts of second-degree murder and five counts of firearm use in commission of felony.

Prosecutor Jim Hingeley cited a witness statement during Wednesday’s hearing, where he described how the individual had seen Jones shoot Devin Chandler while he was asleep in what appeared to be a targeted act before his body slumped to the floor.

Football stars D’Sean Perry and Lavel Davis Jr were identified earlier this week as the other two victims killed in the attack.

Officials have confirmed that Mr Jones was on the field trip with the victims and was on the bus when he opened fire.

A witness also revealed the “bizarre” words the suspect said moments before opening fire.

“Chris got up and pushed and pushed Lavel,” Ryan Lynch told KYW. “After he pushed him, he was like ‘You guys are always messing with me.’”


Live coverage of mass shooting at University of Virginia

Welcome to The Independent’s live blog of the mass shooting at the University of Virginia.

Stay tuned to this page for live coverage of the events as we begin to learn how the massacre that left at least three dead and two injured unfolded on Sunday night, as the suspect in the shooting remains at large.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 11:41

Manhunt for ‘armed and dangerous’ student

A manhunt is currently underway for an “armed and dangerous” University of Virginia student after three victims were killed and two others wounded in a shooting on the college campus.

The mass shooting unfolded at around 10.40pm on Sunday night when a gunman went on a shooting rampage at the University of Virginia’s main campus along Culbreth Road in Charlottesville, university president Jim Ryan said in a statement on Monday morning.

The campus was plunged into lockdown, with students and staff urged to shelter in place while the suspect went on the run.

Three victims were killed in the attack while another two were wounded and taken to hospital for treatment. Their conditions are unclear at this time.

Rachel Sharp has more details here in this developing story.

Student on run after three killed and two injured in University of Virginia shooting

Shooting unfolded at around 10.40pm on Sunday night when a gunman went on a shooting rampage at the University of Virginia’s main campus along Culbreth Road in Charlottesville

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 11:44

UVA Dean of Students warns students to take the ‘frightening' shelter in place commands ‘seriously’

The University of Virginia Dean of Students found themselves in a similar and “frightening” situation as students who were called upon to shelter in place late Sunday night and into Monday morning after an active shooter killed three people and wounded at least two.

“We have all received several shelter in place texts, and they are frightening,” wrote Robyn Hadley, vice-president and dean of students at the university in an email sent out to the school late Sunday night. “Please, please take the shelter in place commands seriously as the situation remains active.”

“If you are not inside and safe, immediately seek safety,” she added in an ominous warning to students.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 11:52

UVA police conducting a ‘complete search on and around UVA grounds'

The University of Virginia police warned students to remain sheltering in place as they issued an alert that law enforcements officers would be conducting a “complete search on and around UVA grounds” and students should therefore expect an “increased law enforcement presence”.

“UVA Alert: A COMPLETE SEARCH ON AND AROUND UVA GROUNDS IS HAPPENING AT THIS TIME. EXPECT INCREASED LAW ENFORCEMENT PRESENCE. CONTINUE TO SHELTER IN PLACE,” the UVA police tweeted in their latest update after a flurry of similar warnings were sent out from the account to warn students they’d be on the campus searching for the suspect in the shooting that left three dead and two injured.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 11:56

What we know about Christopher Darnell Jones

Christopher Darnell Jones, the suspect who remained at large in the mass shooting at the University of Virginia, was “one of our students”, said University President Jim Ryan in a statement issued early Monday morning.

The UVA Police Department and multiple other agencies warned that he is considered “armed and dangerous”.

Jones, who is also a former football player for the university, is included on the university’s athletics website on the 2018 roster, though he didn’t appear in any games.

The website lists Jones’ hometown as Petersburg, Virginia, where he played line-backer and running back at Petersburg High School.

Jones “earned honorable mention all-conference honors as a senior” and spent three years of his high school education at Varina High School where he earned honorable mention all-conference as a freshman and second-team accolades as a sophomore and junior.

The website includes a number of Jones’ accomplishments at high school, which include being a member of the National Honor Society and the National Technical Honor Society, serving as president of Key Club and Jobs for Virginia Grads Program and being named the Student of the Year as a freshman and sophomore at Varina.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 12:06

UVA president ‘heartbroken’ to deliver message ‘any leader hopes never to have to send’

University of Virginia President Jim Ryan shared in an earlier morning statement on Monday that he was “heartbroken” and “devastated” to send a message to staff, students and families “any leader hopes to never have to send”.

“I am devastated that this violence has visited the University of Virginia. This is a traumatic incident for everyone in our community and we have cancelled classes for today,” the president wrote, while sharing his condolences for the victims and their loved ones.

“We will continue to provide updates as the situation unfolds. Please know we have support available if you need it,” Mr Ryan added, noting that UVA’s police are working alongside multiple law enforcement agencies in order to apprehend the suspect, who remained at large as of early Monday morning.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 12:45

UVA Police advise students sheltering in place who don’t require medical attention to call number

The University of Virginia Police advised students who remained sheltering in place who had a non-emergency medical need to call a specific number, while the manhunt for the suspect in the mass shooting spilled over into Monday morning.

“Update: If you are sheltering in place and have a non-emergency medical need, call 434-243-0968. For any emergency, call 9-1-1,” tweeted the UVA police from their official account.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 13:15

Virginia Gov Glenn Youngkin says he and wife are ‘praying’ for UVA community

Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin took to social media to share his condolences and “prayers” for the community at the University of Virginia, after the main campus was the site of one of the most recent mass shootings in the US.

“This morning, Suzanne and I are praying for the UVA community. Virginia State Police is fully coordinating with UVA police department and local authorities. Please shelter in place while the authorities work to locate the suspect,” tweeted the Republican governor.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 13:30

UVA Deputy Spokeswoman: ‘Still a very much active situation'

University of Virginia Deputy Spokeswoman said in a statement in the early hours on Monday morning that the situation on campus remained very much an “active” one.

“All that I can share at the moment is it’s still a very much active situation and that we’re encouraging members of the UVA community to shelter-in-place and call the hotline with any information,” said Bethanie Glovier, according to Daily Progress reporter Sydney Shuler.

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 13:45

Student relays horrifying moment they realised mass shooting had touched UVA campus

University of Virginia sophomore, Em Gunter, 19, told the Richmond Times-Dispatch that she was inside her dorm room on Sunday night when she heard gunshots outside her window on the Charlottesville campus.

It was around 10.15pm, she told the local newspaper, and the 19-year-old was tuning into a lecture on her laptop when she heard six gunshots ring out just outside the International Residential College, where she can see Culbreth Road from her window.

“I just have no words,” Ms Gunter told the local news outlet. “This is insane.”

Johanna Chisholm14 November 2022 14:00

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