Charlottesville, Va. (AP) — A University of Virginia student accused of killing three members of the school’s football team and wounding two other students in an on-campus shooting will be held without bond, a judge ordered Wednesday.
The school announced it is canceling its final home game of the season scheduled for the weekend against Coastal Carolina.
Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. did not enter a plea to the numerous charges he faces during his first court appearance. Appearing via video link from jail, Jones told the judge he plans to hire an attorney, but the judge appointed a public defender to represent him for the time being.
The judge also decided to hear the status quo argument in the case on December 8.
University officials and police said Jones, 22, joined a group of about two dozen others on a field trip Sunday from the Charlottesville campus to watch a play in the nation’s capital, 120 miles (195 kilometers) away. When their bus returned to campus, Jones opened fire, killing LaVall Davis Jr., DeSean Perry and Devin Chandler and wounding two others, one of whom was also a football player, authorities said.
Jones — who police said managed to escape the shooting, a manhunt and a 12-hour campus lockdown — faces three counts of second-degree murder, two counts of malicious wounding and gun-related charges.
The violence at the state’s flagship public university sparked days of grief among students, faculty, the broader Charlottesville community and other supporters. Classes resumed on Wednesday.
Announcing the cancellation of Saturday’s game against Coastal Carolina, the university said in a news release that it has not yet decided whether UVA will participate in the final game of the season Nov. 26 in Blacksburg.
Jones has been in custody since his arrest in suburban Richmond early Monday morning. Albemarle County Commonwealth’s Attorney James Hingley is handling the case against him.
University President Jim Ryan said Monday that authorities do not have a complete understanding of the motive behind the shooting. Court documents filed so far in the case do not provide further insight.
Jones was a member of the football team during the 2018 season, a one-semester walk-on, according to Athletics Director Karla Williams.
In interviews, his father has expressed confusion and surprise and apologized to the victims’ families.
One of the two hospitalized students was discharged from the medical center on Tuesday, health system spokesman Eric Swenson said.
Mike Hollins underwent a second surgery Tuesday, family members of the team’s running back said.
Associated Press writer Sarah Rankin in Richmond, Virginia contributed to this report.
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