“A gunman blasted his way into the Capital Gazette newsroom in Annapolis, Maryland with a shotgun Thursday afternoon, killing five people, authorities said,” Kevin Rector and Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs report for The Baltimore Sun. “The victims were identified as Rob Hiaasen, 59, a former feature writer for The Baltimore Sun who joined the Capital Gazette in 2010 as an assistant editor and columnist; Wendi Winters, 65, a community correspondent who headed special publications; Gerald Fischman, 61, the editorial page editor; John McNamara, 56, a staff writer who had covered high school, college and professional sports for decades; and Rebecca Smith, 34, a sales assistant hired in November. Two others were injured in the attack that began about 2:40 p.m. at the Capital Gazette offices at 888 Bestgate Road in Annapolis.”

“Police took a suspect into custody soon after the shootings. He was identified as Jarrod W. Ramos, a 38-year-old Laurel man with a long-standing grudge against the paper,” Rector and Bogel-Burroughs report. “Ramos was charged with five counts of first-degree murder, according to online court records.”

“‘This was a targeted attack on the Capital Gazette,’ said Anne Arundel County Deputy Police Chief William Krampf,” Rector and Bogel-Burroughs report. “Ramos’ dispute with the Capital Gazette began in July 2011 when a columnist wrote about a criminal harassment case against him. He brought a defamation suit against the columnist and the organization’s editor and publisher. A court ruled in the Capital Gazette’s favor, and an appeals court upheld the ruling. Neither the columnist, Eric Hartley, nor the editor and publisher, Thomas Marquardt, are still employed by the Capital Gazette. They were not present during the shootings.”

U.S. President Trump wrote via Twitter, “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.”

U.S. First Lady Melania Trump wrote via Twitter, “Today’s violence at the Capital Gazette was tragic & evil. My heart goes out to all affected in this brutal & senseless attack, & I send thoughts & prayers for comfort to the friends, family & colleagues of those killed & injured.”

Apple CEO Tim Cook tweeted his support via Twitter, writing, “Our democracy relies on the dedicated work of the free press. Today our hearts are with everyone at @capgaznews, the Annapolis community and journalists everywhere.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families and friends, as well.