Five people were killed on Thursday in a shooting at the offices of The Capital Gazette newspaper in Annapolis, Maryland, authorities said.
“I don’t know what to say other than our thoughts and prayers are with them and their families, and we take comfort knowing that they are in God’s embrace,” Anne Arundel County Executive Steve Schuh said.
Several other people were “gravely injured,” William Krampf, acting chief of the Anne Arundel County Police Department, told a news briefing.
The attacker is in custody and police spokesman Lt. Ryan Frashure said that the department had no other suspects. He described the person in custody as a white male armed with a shotgun, Efe reported.
Schuh said that police found the shooter hiding under a table inside the newspaper office, which is located inside a building that houses a range of other tenants, including at least one medical practice.
“We did recover what we thought may have been an explosive device,” Krampf said. “That has been taken care of. We have members of the bomb squad on scene. We don’t anticipate having any more explosive devices.”
The suspect “has not been very forthcoming” with information, Schuh said.
“To my knowledge, there was no verbal aspect to the incident where he declared his motives or anything else, so at this point we just don’t know,” the county official said.
One of the reporters present in the newsroom at the time recounted the events on Twitter.
“Gunman shot through the glass door to the office and opened fire on multiple employees. Can’t say much more and don’t want to declare anyone dead, but it’s bad,” The Capital Gazette’s Phil Davis wrote in a message posted after the shooting stopped.
US President Donald Trump offered a brief statement on the incident, also via Twitter.
“Prior to departing Wisconsin, I was briefed on the shooting at Capital Gazette in Annapolis, Maryland. My thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families. Thank you to all of the First Responders who are currently on the scene,” he said.
Authorities in several US cities, including New York, responded to the violence in Maryland by sending police to offices of media outlets.
The New York Police Department said that its deployment of counter-terrorism officers was based not on any specific threat, but “out of an abundance of caution until we learn more about the suspect and motives behind the Maryland shooting.”