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Newspaper's Blank Page Speaks Volumes

Police say 'Capital Gazette' shooter tried to kill as many people as possible
By Newser Editors,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 29, 2018 2:25 PM CDT
Newspaper's Blank Page Speaks Volumes
A police photo of suspect Jarrod Warren Ramos.   (Anne Arundel Police via AP)

(Newser) – One of the chilling details to emerge Friday about the mass shooting that killed five people in a Maryland newspaper office: Police say suspect Jarrod Ramos barricaded the exit doors of the Capital Gazette building in Annapolis to prevent escape, reports the Baltimore Sun. "The fellow was there to kill as many people as he could kill," said Anne Arundel County Chief Timothy Altomare, with prosecutor Wes Adams adding that Ramos planned the attack meticulously and used a "tactical approach in hunting down and shooting the innocent people," reports the AP. The 38-year-old Ramos appeared in court via video Friday and was charged with five counts of first-degree murder. He said nothing and appeared expressionless. More coverage:

  • Blank page: The newspaper somehow put out a newspaper Friday, including a striking editorial page that was largely blank. “Today, we are speechless,” the editors wrote. “This page is intentionally left blank to commemorate victims of Thursday’s shootings at our office.” Their names followed.

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  • President Trump: "This attack shocked the conscience of our nation and filled our hearts with grief," Trump said at the White House, reports NBC News. "Journalists, like all Americans, should be free from the fear of being violently attacked while doing their job."
  • Trump, II: At the Washington Post, Greg Sargent writes that he hopes that Trump will now rein in his attacks on the media. But other journalists who took that theme further got in hot water. A reporter at the Republican in Springfield, Mass., has resigned after falsely suggesting in a tweet that the shooter was wearing a pro-Trump hat, reports the AP. And a top Reuters editor has apologized and faces discipline after telling Trump in a tweet that "blood is on your hands," reports the Wrap.
  • Jarring prediction: As previously reported, Ramos had a grudge with the newspaper going back to 2011, when it covered stalking allegations against him. Since then, he made such regular threats that the paper's former editor and publisher, Thomas Marquardt, tells the Baltimore Sun that he informed police in 2013. “I remember telling our attorneys, 'This is a guy who is going to come in and shoot us.'" The story has the full background of Ramos' dispute with the newspaper.
  • A warning: Marquardt tells the Wall Street Journal that newspaper staffers were shown a photo of Ramos years ago and warned to call 911 if they ever saw him. “Everyone knew what he looked like,” says Marquardt. “We took it very seriously.”

  • Fundraising, praise: A GoFundMe page to pay medical bills and other costs had raised more than $140,000 as of Friday afternoon. The Daily Dot takes note of that, along with the praise from journalists and non-journalists alike for the staffers who managed to put out the newspaper Friday. The main story on the shooting had 10 bylines.
  • The victims: CNN has details on the five who were killed.
  • Thoughts and prayers: Not interested, Gazette reporter Selene San Felice told CNN when informed that Trump had tweeted that the newsroom was in his "thoughts and prayers," reports the Daily Beast. "I’m going to need more than a couple days of news coverage and some thoughts and prayers, because it’s our whole lives [that] have been shattered. And so thanks for your prayers, but I couldn’t give a f--- about them if there’s nothing else.”
(Read more mass shootings stories.)

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