The chilling attack was covered in real time by some of the journalists who found themselves under siege. A crime reporter, Phil Davis, described how the gunman “shot through the glass door to the office” before opening fire on employees.
“There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you’re under your desk and then hear the gunman reload,” Mr. Davis wrote.
[Read about the victims of the Capital Gazette shooting.]
The gunman was silent as he stalked the newsroom, stopping once to reload as journalists huddled in fear under their desks, Mr. Davis said in a telephone interview. Once the police arrived, staff members put their hands in the air and shouted, “We’re not him,” Mr. Davis recalled. The gunman was hiding under a desk as the police moved in. He did not exchange gunfire with officers when he was taken in.
In July 2012, Mr. Ramos filed a defamation lawsuit in Maryland’s Prince George’s County Circuit Court against Capital Gazette Communications, its then editor and publisher and a former reporter, claiming that his reputation had been damaged after the newspaper published a story the prior year about Mr. Ramos’s guilty plea in a harassment case. Three months later, he filed a fuller complaint alleging invasion of privacy.
The lawsuit was later dismissed with prejudice by Judge Maureen M. Lamasney after a March 2013 hearing, in which she asked Mr. Ramos to identify anything that was falsely reported in the July 2011 article and to cite examples about how he had been harmed. He was unable to do so, according to a partial transcript of the hearing published in an appellate court decision two years later.
Mr. Ramos represented himself and, according to the appellate decision that later affirmed the dismissal, showed no understanding of defamation law.
The article was published in July 2011 with the headline “Jarrod Wants to Be Your Friend,” and detailed a harassment charge against Mr. Ramos. According to the article, Mr. Ramos sent a friend request on Facebook to a former high school classmate and over the course of several months, he “alternately asked for help, called her vulgar names and told her to kill herself.”