Maryland mayhem – shooter’s feud kills five

Rob Hiaasen, killed in newspaper shooting in Maryland, poses with brother Carl (right) during better days

A man who shot dead five people, including four reporters, had a long-running feud with the Capital Gazette newspaper, according to the media outlet owned by the Baltimore Sun.

During the terrifying ordeal, reporters and others hid under their desks as the man began shooting into the newsroom.

Authorities and the paper confirmed five died and several were wounded. The newspaper identified the alleged shooter as Jarrod Ramos, 38, who had previously filed an unsuccessful defamation lawsuit against the newspaper.

The suspect has been charged with five counts of first degree murder.

Among the five killed was Rob Hiaasen, a man described as a mentor to young journalists.

“I am devastated and heartsick to confirm the loss of my wonderful brother Rob today in the mass shooting in the newsroom at the Annapolis Capital Gazette. Rob was an editor and columnist at the paper, and one of the most gentle and funny people I’ve ever known. He spent his whole gifted career as a journalist, and he believed profoundly in the craft and mission of serving the public’s right to know the news,” said his brother Carl Hiaasen, a Florida-based author.

In a Facebook post he said: “We called him Big Rob because he was so tall, but it was his remarkable heart and humor that made him larger than all of us.
“Please keep our family in your thoughts and prayers tonight.
Hug your loved ones like there’s no tomorrow.”