Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. has been taken into custody by Virginia State police as the lead suspect in a shooting at University of Virginia. Three football player’s lives were taken and two people are injured. Jones Jr. “faces three charges of second-degree murder and three counts of using a handgun in the commission of a felony” UVA Police Chief Timothy Longo Sr said.
The shooting occurred Sunday night as students arrived home after a class field trip. Police engaged in a manhunt causing the school to mandate a campus wide shelter-in-place order. Classes were canceled at the university and K-12 Charlottesville City Schools were closed.
At 11 a.m. ET, police arrested Jones Jr. He was pulled over in Henrico County, 80 miles east of Charlottesville. Upon his arrest the 12 hour shelter-in-place order was lifted on campus. Jones Jr.’s motive is still unclear. He took the lives of Devin Chandler, Lavel Davis Jr. and D’Sean Perry.
“Police responded to a report of shots fired around 10:30 p.m. in an area near a parking garage on Culbreth Road and surrounded by academic buildings,” CNN reported.
This was not Jones Jr.’s first campus offense. In September he told someone “unaffiliated with the university” that he had a gun. Though the gun was never seen by said person.
“Through the course of the threat assessment team’s investigation, we learned of a prior criminal incident involving a concealed weapon violation that occurred outside the city of Charlottesville in February of 2021,” Longo said.
Jones Jr. was supposed to report the February incident to the university but he never did. He was also involved in a hazing case which was dropped due to lack of witness cooperation. Jones Jr. was on the football team in 2018 during his freshman year though he did not play in any games.
Virginia Governor Glenn Youngkin wrote a statement about the shooting on Twitter.