Lynne Griffin pays her respects at a makeshift memorial near the Capital newspaper offices, where five people were shot and killed Thursday in Annapolis, Md. Griffin was a journalism student under John McNamara, who was one of the people killed at the paper.(Mark Wilson / Getty Images)
This undated handout photo obtained from the Anne Arundel Police shows Jarrod Ramos, the suspected Capital newspaper shooter.(Anne Arundel Police )
A resident buys a copy of the Capital newspaper in Annapolis, Md., a day after five journalists were shot dead in the newsroom.(Mandel Ngan / AFP/Getty Images)
This photo combination shows the victims of the shooting at the Gazette in Annapolis, Md. From left: John McNamara, Wendi Winters, Rob Hiaasen, Gerald Fischman and Rebecca Smith.(Baltimore Sun)
A woman delivers flowers at a memorial to shooting victims at the Capital newspaper in Annapolis, Md.(Rod Lamkey Jr. / EPA / Shutterstock)
A Law enforcement officer responds to the deadly shooting at the building that houses the Capital, a daily newspaper in Annapolis, Md.
(Matt McClain / Washington Post)
Photographer Joshua McKerrow, left, and reporter Chase Cook with the Capital work on putting out the newspaper while awaiting news from their colleagues in Annapolis, Md.(Ivan Couronne / AFP/Getty Images)
People walk from the direction of the building that houses the Capital, a daily newspaper where five people were fatally shot Thursday in Annapolis, Md.
(Matt McClain / Washington Post)
Law enforcement officers respond to the deadly shooting at the building that houses the Capital, a daily newspaper in Annapolis, Md.(Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images)
Law enforcement officers respond to a shooting at the Capital, a daily newspaper in Annapolis, Md., that killed five.(Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images)
Maryland state police officers patrol the area near the scene of a shooting at the Capital newspaper.(Jose Luis Magana / Associated Press)
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan speaks about the shooting at a news conference in Annapolis.(Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images)
The scene outside the Capital newspaper building.(Joshua McKerrow / Baltimore Sun)
Police secure the area outside the building where the shooting occurred.(Susan Walsh / Associated Press)
Law enforcement officers converge at the site of the shooting.(Susan Walsh / Associated Press)
Emergency personnel congregate outside the Capital newspaper building.(Alex Wroblewski / Getty Images)
A New York police officer stands guard in front of ABC headquarters. Security was increased at media locations in Manhattan after a fatal shooting at a newspaper building in Maryland.(Spencer Platt / Getty Images)
New York City police take precautionary measures by assigning officers to news outlets in the wake of the shooting at the Capital newspaper in Annapolis, Md. Here, officers stand in front of the New York Times building on Eighth Avenue.(Peter Foley / EPA)
The 38-year-old Laurel, Md., man who gunned down five employees of the Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Md., used a pump-action shotgun purchased legally, and had barricaded the exit doors as part of a pre-planned attack, authorities said Friday.
Jarrod Warren Ramos made his first appearance in court since being charged with five counts of first-degree murder in the attack, staring impassively and blinking at the camera as he appeared over a video link from Anne Arundel County Jail.
Years after unsuccessfully suing the newspaper for defamation, Ramos blasted through the doors of the newspaper offices Thursday afternoon and hid under a desk where police found him, according to charging documents.
Ramos is charged in the killings of editor and columnist Rob Hiaasen, 59; Wendi Winters, 65, a community correspondent who headed special publications; editorial page editor Gerald Fischman, 61; sportswriter John McNamara, 56; and Rebecca Smith, 34, a sales assistant. Two other staff members, Rachael Pacella and Janel Cooley, were injured during the attack. They have been released from the hospital.
“The fellow was there to kill as many people as possible,” Altomare said.
The suspect did not cooperate with police, and Altomare confirmed that authorities used facial recognition technology, drawing from the Maryland Image Repository System, to identify Ramos. Altomare dispelled media reports that the suspect had mutilated his fingers to hide his prints.
Ramos wore a dark medical-scrub-style shirt at his bail review hearing and was ordered held without bail by a district court judge. “There is a certain likelihood you are a danger,” Judge Thomas Pryal said.
Outside of the courthouse, Adams elaborated on Ramos’ actions at the newspaper office.
“There were two entrances to the offices in which this attack occurred. The rear door was barricaded. Mr. Ramos then, as I told the judge, entered the front door and made his way through the office, where he was shooting victims as he walked through the office.”
Windows at the suspect’s basement apartment were boarded up by early Friday morning and a large dent marked the blue door. Ramos’ name was scrawled on a green slip of paper on the mailbox.
Residents of the building declined to comment and a property manager called Laurel police to help clear news reporters from the apartment complex’s parking lot about 9:30 a.m., just as more reporters arrived on the scene.
To help piece together the details of how the shooting rampage unfolded, police used surveillance video from the office.
The attack began about 2:40 p.m., when 170 people were working inside the 5,000-square-foot office complex. The Capital Gazette, which is owned by the Baltimore Sun, is one of 30 tenants in the building and one of a handful on the first floor.
Reporters who witnessed the shooting said they dived under their desks for protection, some said they tried not to breathe or make any sounds, some screamed and others pleaded for help on Twitter. Police said they arrived within 60 seconds, and surrounded the shooter.
Photographer Paul Gillespie said, “I kept thinking, ‘I can’t believe I’m going to die. I can’t believe this.’”
He made it out alive, describing running during a lull in the gunfire and jumping over a co-worker’s body and escaping the building. Gillespie said he made it to a nearby bank and screamed for people to call the police.
Ramos’ long grudge with the Capital Gazette began in July 2011 after the paper ran a column about him harassing a former high school classmate on social media and the criminal case against him. He sued the columnist and the organization’s editor and publisher for damaging his reputation, but a court ruled in the newspaper’s favor and Ramos ultimately lost an appeal.
In a 2014 court filing, Ramos said that he wanted to kill columnist Eric Hartley, who had written about his harassment case.
“Plaintiff has sworn a legal oath he would like to kill Hartley, and he still would,” Ramos wrote.
Neither Hartley nor the editor and publisher, Thomas Marquardt, are still employed by the Capital Gazette. They were not present during the shootings.
Altomare said the newspaper’s lawyers had talked with police in 2013 about whether misdemeanor charges should be pressed against Ramos. But they decided doing so might just further antagonize him and worsen the situation, he said.
Altomare refrained from using Ramos’ name during the Friday morning news conference. “I will not say his name today,” the chief said. “He doesn’t deserve for us to talk about him for one more second.”
President Trump addressed Thursday’s “horrific shooting.”
“This attack shocked the conscience of our nation and filled our hearts with grief,” Trump said from the White House on Friday. “Journalists, like all Americans, should be free from the fear of being violently attacked while doing their jobs.”
Baltimore Sun reporters Yvonne Wenger, Kevin Rector and Nicholas Bogel-Burroughs contributed to this report.
1:25 p.m.: This article was updated with information from a 2014 court filing detailing the suspect’s grievances with the Capital.
10:45 a.m..: This article was updated to include additional comments from Anne Arundel County Police Chief Timothy Altomare
10 a.m.: This article was updated to include reports from the Anne Arundel County Police news conference and information from the bail hearing.
This article was originally published at 8 a.m.