Several members of Maryland’s Capital Gazette newspaper are said to be dead after a man wielding a shotgun opened fire on the newsroom.
Local police confirmed five people were fatally wounded, with many others “gravely injured,” after saying the shooter is in custody. Phil Davis, a crime and courts reporter at the paper, which is owned by the Baltimore Sun, tweeted around 3:30 p.m. there was an active shooter in the newsroom located at the Capital Gazette building. Davis hesitated to confirm that any of his colleagues were killed, writing only “it’s bad,” but within a few minutes seemed to confirm the worst. “A single shooter shot multiple people at my office, some of whom are dead.”
In a subsequent tweet, he referred to the shooter as a male and said the man used a shotgun to shoot through a glass door to the newsroom and “opened fire on multiple employees.”
“There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you’re under your desk and then hear the gunman reload,” Davis wrote.
He added around 4:15 that he had already made it out of the office and is waiting to be interviewed by police. Anthony Messenger, an intern with the Gazette, seems to have tweeted at some point during the shooting. Around 3 p.m. he wrote, “Active shooter 888 Bestgate please help us.” He’s not been on Twitter since, but Joshua McKerrow, a photographer with the paper and The Baltimore Sun, tweeted that Messenger and five other colleagues were “ok.”
Police also arrived at the newsroom of the Baltimore Sun in that city, the paper reported, but only as a precaution.
Now among one of the most high-profile attacks on a media organization, the Annapolis shooting comes about three years after the shooting attack on France’s satirical and anti-conformist Charlie Hebdo, which left 12 of the magazine’s staff dead. France’s then president François Hollande characterized the brutal attack as an act of terror.