ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The grieving and the reporting sort of jumbled together for members of staff in The Capital Gazette after a fatal shooting at the newspaper, but they were determined to have the next day’s edition.
Journalists with the Annapolis daily huddled under a covered parking deck of the Annapolis Mall, not far from where the scores of other media were clumped together Thursday in anticipation of further details of the shooting that left five people dead, including colleagues and others injured.
Editor Rick Hutzell, however, a couple of journalists to talk about, a discussion, peppered with hugs and diversified expressions.
“We are trying to work and deal with five people” who lost their lives, said reporter Pat Furgurson, whose wife and adult son were with him, at the mall.
Furgurson said that his colleagues were “just people trying to do their work for the public.”
“You think that something like this can happen in Afghanistan, not in a newsroom a few steps away from the shopping centre,” he said, reflecting on what seemed to be one of the deadliest attacks on journalists in AMERICAN history. The police later said the shooter explicitly the newspaper.
The Capital city is an institution in the capital of Maryland and was one of the last newspapers to switch of the publication in the afternoon to the morning. Its sister publication, the Maryland Gazette was founded in 1727 and is one of the oldest newspapers in America. In 1767, it became the first paper in America to be published by a woman, Anne Catherine Green, who led the resistance against the stamp tax in the run-up to the American Revolution.
For many years The Capital was published by diplomat Philip Merrill, who died in 2006. It was sold in 2014 to the Baltimore Sun Media Group.
Following that history, the paper’s staff members were determined Thursday that she would publish, in spite of the tragedy. Capital reporter Chase Cook wrote on Twitter: “I can tell you this: We put a damn paper tomorrow.”
Reporters brushed aside any logistical problems in putting out a newspaper as well as the newsroom is an off-limits crime scene.
High school sports editor Bob Hough told The Associated Press that he and a colleague were working on the sports section of his house Thursday evening.
“I don’t know that there ever thought that not doing something together,” said Hough, who was not at the office when the shooting broke out. Hough said they were doing a full five-page section in collaboration with the design team is based in the Baltimore Sun that always puts the pages.
He noted that some of his colleagues were reporting on the shooting story as it continue to develop late Thursday and said he expects that the next day the paper would be that the coverage is and what otherwise would be a typical Friday paper. 10:30 a.m. Thursday, the Capital city of the web site had in-depth stories on the shooting, a yearslong feud the defendant had with the paper and a photo and profile of each of the journalists killed co-workers.
Photographer Josh McKerrow edited photos on a laptop in the garage deck.
“It is what our instinct was to go back to work,” McKerrow said. “It is what our colleagues would have done.”
Associated Press writer Sarah Rankin contributed to this report from Richmond, Virginia.