WASHINGTON — Journalists and media outlets across the globe responded to reports of an active shooter at the Capital Gazette with an outpouring of condolences and solidarity.
A gunman killed five people after entering the Annapolis building where the news outlet is located Thursday afternoon. As news of the tragedy spread, outlets and journalists shared messages of support. But others reminded readers that some reporters face danger every day.
The Newseum in D.C. and other journalism organizations posted that journalism can be deadly work.
The Newseum’s Facebook page said the murder of journalists working in service of public good is an assault on freedom and democracy.
“As we mourn the loss of at least five people at the offices of the Capital Gazette, we encourage you to take a moment to consider a world #WithoutNews and those who work to bring it to you every day,” a statement said.
Police have not said whether the five killed were Capital Gazette employees. Some 170 people were escorted from the building at 888 Bestgate Road, which contains the Gazette and several other businesses.
“So far this year, 29 journalists have been killed around the world, according to the Committee to Protect Journalists,” the Poynter institute said on its website.
The Society of Professional Journalists released a statement of sympathy from its national President Rebecca Baker.
“Our hearts go out to the victims and their family, friends and colleagues,” she said. “We are ready to help in any way we can.”
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan released a statement Thursday praising the paper and its mission to deliver local news.
“The Capital Gazette is my hometown paper, and I have the greatest respect for the fine journalists, and all the men and women, who work there,” he said.”They serve each day to shine light on the world around us so that we might see with more clarity and greater understanding.”
The first reports of the attack came from tweets by journalists who work at the Gazette, including reporter Phil Davis.
“There is nothing more terrifying than hearing multiple people get shot while you’re under your desk and then hear the gunman reload,” the journalist covering courts and crime tweeted.
Arizona Daily Star columnist Tim Steller was among the journalists who replied to his message.
I am so sorry this happened to you and the staff there. Journalists around the country are with you.
— Tim Steller (@senyorreporter) June 28, 2018
Davis’ tweet got replies from journalists as far away as New Zealand.
Newspapers like the Dallas Morning News, The Richmond Times-Dispatch and the Virginian-Pilot all tweeted messages of support.
Ours too. https://t.co/Rjp62fJWMW
— Times-Dispatch (@RTDNEWS) June 28, 2018
Senior editor at TIME magazine Ryan Teague Beckwith pointed out on Twitter the newspaper’s dedication to local news. Soon after the shooting, the Gazette had posted a story on its website reporting on the event in its own newsroom.
— ryan teague beckwith (@ryanbeckwith) June 28, 2018
Capital Gazette reporter Chase Cook posted to his Twitter page that he was safe and not in the building at the time of the shooting. So, he got to the scene and started working. Cook’s tweet is perhaps the one that resonated the most in the journalism community:
I can tell you this: We are putting out a damn paper tomorrow.
— Chase Cook (@chaseacook) June 28, 2018