A gunman opened fire in the newsroom at The Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland Thursday. The company publishes The Capital and the Maryland Gazette, among other newspapers, and is located at 888 Bestgate Road in western Annapolis.
The Anne Arundel County Police Department reported that the shooting began around 2:34 p.m., and involved multiple fatalities, and multiple other victims being shot. At least five people have been killed and several others were injured and sent to the Anne Arundel Medical Center for treatment. A white male in his 20s was also captured by police and is in custody as a suspect, but refused to identify himself.
The alleged gunman ‘damaged his fingertips’ so law enforcement could not immediately identify him, CBS News reported.
Local media reports the suspect used a shotgun—police later only identified the weapon as a ‘long gun.’
County police evacuated 170 people from the building to a re-unification center set up at the nearby Westfield Annapolis shopping center. A suspected explosive device was recovered from the scene, police said.
Phil Davis, a Capital crime reporter at the site of the shooting, tweeted that the gunman “shot through the glass door to the office and opened fire on multiple employees.” Davis also described the newspaper’s offices as a “warzone” after the shooting and described hearing the gunman reload. He said there was a lone male gunman.
Police were also sent to the offices of The Baltimore Sun, who own Capital Gazette, as a precaution, although no threat was registered there. The New York City Police Department also deployed counter-terrorism units to the headquarters of major news outlets in New York City as a precaution against similar attacks. The Chicago Police Department also took similar actions.
Maryland Governor Larry Hogan tweeted that he was “[a]bsolutely devastated to learn of this tragedy in Annapolis,” and asking residents to “heed all warnings and stay away from the area.” In a press conference, he praised local law enforcement for responding “within 60 seconds.”
President Trump was briefed on the shooting before leaving Wisconsin and tweeted his condolences.
A motive for the crime remains unknown.