University President Jim Ryan and Rector of the Board of Visitors Whitt Clement have requested that Attorney General Jason Miyares appoint a special counsel to conduct an independent and external review surrounding the University’s response to Sunday’s events as well as their assessment of the suspect prior to the tragedy.
“The University of Virginia community remains in a state of shock and mourning after three members of our community were killed and another two were seriously wounded,” Ryan said. “In the wake of that tragedy, our top priority has been offering students, faculty, staff, parents and alumni the support and resources they need as they continue to grieve and process this terrible tragedy.”
Three students — second-year student Devin Chandler, third-year student Lavel Davis and fourth-year student D'Sean Perry — were fatally shot. All three were members of the Virginia football team. Third-year Mike Hollins and second-year Marlee Morgan were both injured and have been treated at the University Medical Center. One has been discharged and the other is in “fair” condition, per the most recent updates from U.Va. Health.
Clement said he expects for the review to provide a deeper understanding about what led to Sunday’s tragedy, and while the review may involve confidential information, the University will provide as much information as possible. The University is also requesting that the special counsel review all relevant University policies and procedures to make recommendations for improvements and changes.
Suspect Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. was arrested Monday after a manhunt that lasted nearly 12 hours and has been charged with three counts of second degree murder, two counts of malicious shooting and five counts of posession of a hand gun in the commission of a felony.
Jones was reported to the University’s threat assessment team in fall 2022 for alleged possession of a gun. The Office of Student Affairs responded to the report and made efforts to contact Jones as well as his roommate, who said he saw no indication that Jones had a gun.
The threat assessment investigation also revealed that Jones had been involved in a prior criminal incident outside of Charlottesville in February 2021 involving a concealed weapon. Students are required to report such convictions while they are students, but Jones failed to do so.