Baltimore Ravens offensive tackle Morgan Moses issued a statement in response to the triple murder on the University of Virginia campus.
Three University of Virginia football players were murdered on Sunday night after returning to the university after viewing a play in Washington D.C.
University of Virginia police suspect that former running back Chris Darnell Jones Jr. committed the murders and wounded two others. Jones was arrested in Henrico County with Henrico Police reporting he was arrested on Monday, November 14th in the 5700 block of Edgelawn Street without incident.
In a press conference, University of Virginia President Jim Ryan provided details on the murders and the names of the three victims.
He stated, “At approximately 10:30 PM university police responded to a call of shots fired in the Culbreth parking garage area. The suspected shooter is UVA student Christopher Darnell Jones Jr. Upon arrival at the scene, university police encountered several victims of gunshot wounds. The shootings occurred on a bus full of students returning from a field trip.”
He then detailed the identities of the three murder victims, “Three of the victims did not survive. They were Devin Chandler, a second year from Virginia Beach, Virginia. Lavell Davis a third year student from Ridgeville, South Carolina, and D’Sean Perry, a fourth year student from Miami, Florida. All three were members of the football team.”
“Two other students were wounded and are being treated for injuries at the UVA Medical Center. One is in good condition. One is in critical condition. In order to protect their privacy, we are not releasing their names at this moment,” Ryan continued.
The names of the two other victims have since been revealed. They are football player Michael Hollins and student Marlee Morgan.
According to University of Virginia police chief Tim Longo, Jones was charged “with three counts of second-degree murder. And we charged him with three counts of using a handgun in the commission of a felony.”
Jones appeared in court on Wednesday where Commonwealth’s Attorney James Hingeley provided details of witness statements, one which claims that Jones murdered Chandler while he was sleeping on the bus.
The Richmond Times-Dispatch also detailed that he “targeted specific people when he opened fire.” Jones is next scheduled to appear in court on December 8 at 9:30 a.m.
Moses issued his response to the triple murder via the Baltimore Ravens’ social media. His statement shared to Twitter begins, “My heart and condolences go out to the University of Virginia community and all the families who have been affected by Sunday night’s tragedy. What happened at my alma mater not only saddens me, but once again reaffirms how much work must be done to rid our society of gun violence.”
He added, “With yet another senseless shooting, we lost some great young men in the making — young men with futures, young men who have the ability and desire to create positive change in today’s world. I firmly believe that we must commit to pulling together as one so our country — especially in places of learning — becomes a safer place.”
Moses is right that there is a lot of work that must be done to rid our society of gun violence. But the answer is not outlawing firearms. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches, “Love toward oneself remains a fundamental principle of morality. Therefore it is legitimate to insist on respect for one’s own right to life Someone who defends his life is not guilty of murder even if he is forced to deal his aggressor a lethal blow.”
It further teaches, “Legitimate defense can be not only a right but a grave duty for one who is responsible for the lives of others. The defense of the common good requires that an unjust aggressor be rendered unable to cause harm. For this reason, those who legitimately hold authority also have the right to use arms to repel aggressors against the civil community entrusted to their responsibility.”
The real answer to the immorality shown in these murders and others like them is turning to Christ and seeking his help, following his teachings, and dedicating yourself to him.