The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Further Proof the Washington Post Copy Desk Is Staffed by Incompetent Idiots

Posted on | November 14, 2022 | Comments Off on Further Proof the Washington Post Copy Desk Is Staffed by Incompetent Idiots

As if further proof were needed. They quickly changed the headline and re-wrote the lead, but you have to wonder, what kind of hiring process results in one of the nation’s leading newspapers employing an editor who would click the “publish” button on something like that?

“A gunman has killed three people at a university — quick, somebody write an upbeat human interest feature on the killer!”

The re-written version of the story now leads with the fact that the suspect had two previous “incidents” involving weapons:

The 22-year-old University of Virginia student accused of killing three classmates and wounding two others on campus had previously been investigated by the school for claiming he owned a gun and was the subject of a separate incident in 2021 that involved a concealed weapon, police announced Monday morning. . . .
[Christopher Darnell Jones Jr.] had joined about 25 other students Sunday on a school trip to Washington, where the group watched a play and ate together, the university’s chief of police, Timothy Longo Sr., said at a press conference. When the students returned to campus, Longo said, Jones opened fire for reasons that remain unknown.
Jones, now charged with three counts of second-degree murder, had come to the attention of the school’s threat assessment team after they learned in September 2022 that Jones told someone he owned a gun, Longo said.
“The comment about Mr. Jones owning a gun was not made in conjunction with any threats,” said Longo, who told reporters that the office of student affairs “made efforts” to contact Jones and interviewed his roommate. That roommate did not report seeing Jones with a firearm.
Jones was at the center of “a prior criminal incident involving a concealed weapon violation that occurred outside the city of Charlottesville in February 2021,” Longo said, noting that, as a student, Jones was required to report the case to the school but never did.
The university filed administrative charges but the case was still pending when Jones allegedly gunned down his classmates Sunday night.

Heckuva job, “threat assessment team”! Nothing like filing “administrative charges” to deter armed violence. The three fatalities in the shooting were all UVA football players.

Lavel Davis Jr. was a particularly promising player, a 6-foot-7 wide receiver who caught 20 passes for 515 yards and five touchdowns his freshman season, and started six of eight games as a junior after missing his sophomore season due to injury. Now, here’s the “troubled childhood” angle that was the WaPo story’s original lead:

Once, Jones had been celebrated as a model of perseverance, overcoming a difficult childhood to earn his spot on a prestigious university’s football team.
He spent his early years living in Richmond public housing complexes, where it was often too dangerous to play outside, the Richmond-Times Dispatch reported in a 2018 profile. At night, while his mother worked, Jones was sometimes responsible for feeding his three siblings, walking to nearby grocery stores to pick up Ramen noodles or bologna. When he was 5, his parents divorced and his father left, a loss that he called “one of the most traumatic things that happened to me in my life.”
“When I went to school, people didn’t understand me,” said Jones, then 18, telling a reporter that he attacked other children who bullied him for being smart, leading to suspensions and stints in alternative school.
A woman who identified herself as Jones’s mother, Margo, answered a Washington Post reporter’s call Monday morning.
“I can tell you now that Chris was a good kid,” she said, before hanging up.
Brion Logan, his close friend and teammate in both middle and high school, recalled Jones being taunted as a child.
“Chris would wear outdated clothes and outdated shoes that a lot of people did not wear at the time, and they’d make fun of him because of his situation,” said Logan, a 22-year-old Navy enlistee. “He was always a nice person. He grew up in an unfortunate situation with his dad not being in his life too much and his mom not being the best-off financially.”
Despite the chaos in his life, Jones always made good grades.
“I would get upset because my intelligence was being insulted. Kids would pick on me — ‘Why did you do that? Why did you answer that question?’ ” Jones told the Times-Dispatch. “And in that world, disrespect means you should fight.”
When he reached sixth grade, his family moved to Varina, 10 miles outside Richmond. There, he found mentors, especially through football, but his relationship with his mother fell apart.
In search of a “new start” in 2016, he moved to Petersburg to live with his grandmother, Mary Jones. The Times-Dispatch story reported that over the next two years, mentors “helped him let go of his anger.”
“He always had strong goals. He was ambitious, but his anger simply got in the way,” one of those mentors, Xavier Richardson, said back then. “I try to help him understand that he has been able to succeed despite his obstacles, and he can thrive from them.”
Jones appeared to flourish in the years that followed. He played linebacker and running back at Petersburg High, earning honorable mention all-conference honors as a senior, according to a football biography on the University of Virginia website. He belonged to the National Honor Society and National Technical Honor Society and served as president of both the Key Club and Jobs for Virginia Graduates program.

Wonder if his high school yearbook entry mentions that classmates voted Jones “Most Likely to Murder Three People in Cold Blood”?

(Hat-tip: Ed Driscoll at Instapundit.)



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