Jarrod Ramos' stalking victim says she tried to warn authorities Capital Gazette suspect might become mass shooter
The woman mercilessly harassed by the Capital Gazette shooting suspect years before his deadly rampage warned a former police official that he fit the profile of a mass shooter, according to a new report.
“(He) will be your next shooter,” the woman reportedly told the law enforcement vet, according to an interview she gave to Baltimore’s WBAL 11 in the aftermath of Thursday’s attack.
“He’s a f---ing nut job,” the woman, a former high school classmate of the alleged shooter, told the station.
The suspect, Jarrod Ramos, allegedly shot his way into the Annapolis newsroom of the Capital Gazette Thursday afternoon and slaughtered five people as they worked at the centuries-old community newspaper.
The victims were later identified as Wendi Winters, 65, John McNamara, 56, Gerald Fischman, 61, Rebecca Smith, 34, and Rob Hiaasen, 59.
These are the victims of the deadly shooting:
All were journalists except for Smith, who worked in sales.
Ramos made clear on social media he had a longstanding grudge against the newspaper.
He previously sued it for defamation, and lost, after the paper accurately reported on his traumatizing taunting of the former high school classmate.
Court records show Ramos pleaded guilty on July 26, 2011, to a charge of criminal harassment against the woman.
The woman’s lawyer told CBS News that Ramos tormented his client for years.
“He was as angry an individual as I have ever seen,” the lawyer, Brennan McCarthy, said.
“She lost her job because of this individual,” he told CBS. “He is malevolent. He forwarded a letter to her employer, basically stating that she was bipolar and a drunkard, which is ridiculous.”
According to court filings, the harassment of the woman began around 2009, after Ramos reached out to the woman on Facebook.
The woman reportedly recognized Ramos needed counseling and tried to help him before he turned on her with angry and vulgar comments.
Shortly after Ramos’ guilty plea, Capital Gazette reporter Eric Hartley published a story titled, “Jarrod wants to be your friend.”
It gave voice to the victim’s suffering and included chilling details such a one message Ramos sent to the woman instructing her to “go hang yourself.”
Ramos sued the paper for defamation in 2012. The case was dismissed in 2015 on appeal.
“He fought us all the way to the top. He legitimately believed they misrepresented him and made him look crazy in that story,” William Zak Shirley, of the newspaper’s lawyers, told the Daily News.
Shirley described Ramos as unstable, someone who regularly threatened his targets on Twitter and in court paperwork.
“I remember at one point he was talking in a motion and somehow worked in how he wanted to smash Hartley’s face into the concrete. We were concerned at the time. He was not stable,” Shirley said.
“I was mentioned in his Twitter feed twice. I didn’t want him to know where I lived,” he said.Shirley said Ramos was clearly intelligent, navigating the complex court system as his own lawyer, but he simply couldn’t accept he was wrong.
“He had a simmering anger about him that would bubble over,” he said.
“He would make cogent legal arguments in one paragraph and then go off the deep-end with long rambling emotions. There would be an argument in there, but you had to separate it from the ranting,” Shirley said.
Ramos, 38, has been charged with five counts of first-degree murder.
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