Suspect in University of Virginia shooting charged and arrested

Photo Credit: Ryan Ledbetter / Unsplash

By Amisha Kumar
Boston University News Service 

A University of Virginia student, identified as the suspect, has been charged and arrested in connection with the Nov. 13 on-campus shooting that killed three student-athletes and injured two other students, said university officials on Monday.

“The search for the suspect may be over, but the work of understanding this terrible crime and what motivated him to commit it is just beginning,” said University of Virginia president James E. Ryan in a public statement. “University Police will continue to work with their partners in law enforcement to investigate this shooting, and we will provide additional information about those efforts as we are able.”

Christopher Darnell Jones Jr., 22, was identified as the suspect in the shooting by the police. Jones is accused with the charges of three counts of using a handgun in the commission of a felony and three counts of second-degree murder, said university police.

The three students killed were D’Sean Perry, Lavel Davis Jr. and Devin Chandler.

The two students that were wounded remain unidentified. One is in critical condition, and the other is in good condition as of Nov. 14, said the university police.

“We are also monitoring the progress of two students who are in the excellent care of our medical center,” said Ryan.

The suspect, Jones, or his lawyer, has not made any public statements as of Nov. 15.

“We are grateful to the law enforcement personnel across the Commonwealth for their efforts to locate and apprehend the suspect,” said representatives of Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville in a joint statement. 

The representatives of Albemarle County and the City of Charlottesville said the shooting is considered “ongoing,” with the state and federal law enforcement in partnership with the 

University of Virginia leading the investigation.

University classes scheduled for Monday were canceled, and neighboring school districts, Charlottesville City and Albemarle County were closed.

Charlottesville Police Department opened an investigation into social media threats against the University of Virginia on Monday, obtaining the address connected with the suspect of the posts.

The suspect of the posts, Bryan Michael Silva, 31, was arrested and charged with “possession or transportation of firearms, firearms ammunition, stun weapons, explosives or concealed weapons by convicted felons” and “possession of controlled substance,” said the Charlottesville Police Department.

Silva was served an outstanding/active protective order issued by the Albemarle County General District Court and was held without bond at the Albemarle – Charlottesville Regional Jail, said the Charlottesville Police Department.

“CPD does not believe at this time Mr. Silva’s threats were related to the tragic events that occurred last night at the University of Virginia,” said the Charlottesville Police Department. 

“However, we understand the fear this caused in our community and acted swiftly to resolve this investigation.”

University and state officials publically gave condolences to the victims’ families and their communities.

“They [Level, D’Sean and Devin] touched us, inspired us, and worked incredibly hard as representatives of our program, university, and community,” said Toney Elliott, head coach of the Virginia Cavaliers Football Club that the three victims shot were members of, in a public statement. “Our hearts ache for their families, their classmates, and their friends.”

“We are heartbroken to hear about the tragic shooting at UVA and are praying for those who were injured, the families who lost loved ones, and the entire UVA community,” said Sen. Kaine and Sen. Warner in a joint statement.

Attorney General Jason Miyares said the case is “actively” being investigated, and more information will be provided at an “appropriate time.”

“On an incredibly sad and frightening day, people in every corner of this community responded to secure our Grounds, keep us all informed, comfort those most deeply affected and finally apprehend the suspect,” said Ryan in a statement to the University community.” This does not make up for the tragic loss of our students, but it is a reminder that this community remains compassionate, caring and committed even in the face of tragedy.”

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