ALBERMARLE COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — The shooting at University of Virginia on Sunday night was not random, according to a witness account in court on Wednesday morning.
Christopher Darnell Jones, Jr. was scheduled for a bond hearing at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 16, at the Albemarle General District Court. Jones appeared emotionless as his charges were read to him via video link.
According to Commonwealth’s Attorney James Hingeley, a witness told authorities that Jones shot Devin Chandler in his sleep. The witness said that they saw Jones point the gun at Chandler while he was sleeping.
Chandler — along with Lavel Davis, Jr. and D’Sean Perry — was killed in the shooting. Marlee Morgan and Michael Hollins were reportedly wounded. When asked in what order the victims were shot, the prosecution said that would be getting into the facts of the case and declined to provide more specifics.
The witness also reportedly said Jones was targeting certain people and that the gunfire was not random.
Jones was originally charged with three counts of second-degree murder and three firearm charges for the shooting of Davis, Perry and Chandler. He now has additional charges that have been filed for the malicious wounding of Morgan and the malicious wounding of Hollins, with two more firearm charges.
During his initial court appearance, Jones was not required to file a plea, however, Judge Andrew Sneathern appointed an interim public defender for Jones, who will be given two weeks to seek out and hire his own counsel. Jones stated that he previously worked at the Charlottesville Boys and Girls Club and at a local hospital 8 hours a week. His bi-weekly pay was approximately $360 making him eligible for a court-appointed attorney, according to the judge.
Following the court proceedings, Hingley declined to comment on whether more charges were to come. He did clarify, however, that Judge Matthew Quatara had recused himself from the case because he issued the warrants for Jones’ arrest.
Jones was previously known to police in the state, after being arrested in Feb. 2021 in Chesterfield County for concealed weapons charges. In Oct. 2021, Jones also received a suspended sentence for a misdemeanor hit-and-run charge with property damage and reckless driving. He also received a suspended sentence for an incident that happened in Oct. 2020.
Jones’ next court date is set for Thursday, Dec. 8 at 9:30 a.m.
This is a developing story. Stay with 8News for updates.