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UVa knew of gun conviction against student before triple murder but never started discipline process

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. — The College of Virginia admitted Tuesday it knew triple-murder suspect Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. had been convicted of a weapons cost weeks earlier than this weekend’s carnage and didn’t begin a disciplinary course of towards him.

Nevertheless it was unclear whether or not that understanding would have been sufficient for the elite Charlottesville college to take well timed, critical motion towards Jones, the scholar accused of gunning down three Cavaliers soccer gamers.

The college had been “reviewing a possible hazing problem” when the Workplace of Scholar Affairs “heard from a pupil that Mr. Jones made a remark to him about possessing a gun,” the college stated in an announcement Tuesday.

“The reporting social gathering didn’t see Mr. Jones in possession of a gun,” the assertion stated. “The remark about proudly owning a gun was not made at the side of a menace.”

Because the probe moved ahead, it was realized that “Mr. Jones beforehand had been convicted of a misdemeanor for a hid weapons violation in 2021,” the college stated.

College spokesman Brian Coy stated that it was “round mid-September” that the college uncovered Jones’ gun incident and that “he had didn’t disclose a conviction to the college, which is a requirement of college coverage.”

The Workplace of Scholar Affairs moved Oct. 27 “to escalate his case for disciplinary motion,” the assertion stated.

However officers stated they realized solely after Sunday’s taking pictures that the report of his conviction was by no means relayed to the College Judiciary Committee.

Whereas the student-led College Judiciary Committee may need been able to behave towards Jones, the college stated that in “order to serve due course of, their proceedings typically take weeks or months.”

“Within the wake of the taking pictures yesterday, Scholar Affairs officers found that the report had not been transmitted to the College Judiciary Committee (UJC), and are working to right that,” the college stated.

Jones, 22, is accused of gunning down D’Sean Perry, Devin Chandler and Lavel Davis Jr. and injuring two different folks after a faculty discipline journey Sunday evening.

Jones was on the Cavaliers’ soccer roster for one season, in 2018, and police have not instantly defined what may need motivated Sunday’s bloodshed.

The suspect’s earlier encounter with police occurred Feb. 22 final 12 months as officers got here as much as Jones’ automobile, close to Boisseau Avenue and Third Avenue, as a result of his car registration “didn’t come again on file,” Chesterfield County police stated in an announcement Tuesday.

Jones was arrested on the weapons cost, police stated. He was given a 12-month suspended sentence and fined $100, in keeping with courtroom information. Jones’ legal professional in final 12 months’s gun case couldn’t be reached for remark Tuesday.

Jones was arrested Monday and booked on suspicion of three counts of second-degree homicide and use of a firearm within the fee of a felony.

Albemarle County Commonwealth’s Lawyer James Hingeley stated Tuesday that Jones will even face two counts of malicious wounding and extra gun-related fees.

Brion Logan, 22, of Georgia, described himself as Jones’ greatest pal in center college. The 2 met within the sixth grade in Richmond, Virginia.

Jones had a tough upbringing at dwelling and was bullied in school, Logan stated.

“I’d by no means suppose it might have gotten this far,” Logan stated. “He was a fairly sensible man. I’d have thought he would have reached out to somebody earlier than it acquired this far.”

Antonio Planas reported from Charlottesville. David Okay. Li and Marlene Lenthang reported from New York.

The Related Press contributed.

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