The medical examiner confirmed that the three University of Virginia football players killed in what prosecutors described as a “targeted” shooting on campus this week all died from gunshot wounds to the head.
According to CBS News, the Office of the Chief Medical Examiner issued a statement to the Associated Press on Thursday describing the causes of death for Lavel Davis Jr, Devin Chandler, and D’Sean Perry.
According to LaKeshia Johnson, the Central District Administrator for the medical office, all three student-athletes died from apparent homicide.
The medical examiner’s office information comes as officials provide their most detailed account of Sunday night’s brazen shooting on the Charlottesville campus, which killed three students and injured two more – students Mike Hollins and Marlee Morgan.
Mr Hollins, a UVA football player, was shot in the back and remained in the hospital after two surgeries to remove the bullet from his stomach, while Ms Morgan, the only person injured in the shooting who was not a member of the school’s football team, was reportedly released from the hospital on Tuesday.
Christopher Darnell Jones Jr, 22, the suspected gunman in the attack, was arraigned on Wednesday for second-degree murder, two counts of malicious wounding, and other firearm-related charges stemming from the mass shooting on Sunday.
Jones, who was denied bond on Wednesday, said little during the proceedings, except to say he was working to retain legal representation before the next trial on December 8th.
Details from the football players’ final moments aboard the charter bus returning from a field trip to the nation’s capital emerged earlier this week, as prosecutors argued that the attack on the players was “targeted,” revealing how one of the victims, Devin Chandler, was allegedly shot in the head while fast asleep.
Virginia State Police, who have officially taken over the investigation, have also provided a more detailed account of the events leading up to the brutal assault on UVA’s main campus.
According to a statement released by the force on Thursday, the 22-year-old suspect went on a field trip to Washington, DC on Sunday night, where the group dined and saw a play at the Atlas Performing Arts Center.
The former UVA football player “produced a weapon and began firing” after returning to campus and pulling into the parking garage shortly after 10 p.m. local time, according to the news release. The 22-year-old then continued to fire shots as he exited the charter bus, fleeing on foot and then driving away in a Dodge Durango.
Authorities confirmed that a handgun was recovered “relatively close” to the scene of the crime, and a search warrant of the suspect’s home later revealed an additional two firearms – a rifle and a handgun.
University President Jim Ryan confirmed Thursday that the university is cooperating with authorities in the criminal investigation and that the school has asked Attorney General Jason Miyares to conduct an external review of the university’s response to the shooting and efforts to prevent such an incident.
This comes as the university has come under increasing scrutiny for what role they could’ve played in preventing a massacre of this magnitude, as it was revealed earlier this week that Jones was on the radar of the school’s multidisciplinary threat assessment team for a potential hazing incident.
This initial investigation revealed that Jones had made statements about owning a gun and had failed to disclose that he had been tried and convicted for a misdemeanor involving a concealed weapon charge prior to arriving at the university, which is against policy.
The school said in a statement issued this week that on 27 October, they had “escalated his case for disciplinary action” but either due to human or technical error it didn’t get brought to the attention of the University Judicial Committee until Tuesday, two days after the shooting took place.