Capital Gazette survivor Anthony Messenger described the situation during the shooting leading up to his viral tweet.
During an interview with NBC’s “Today” Mr. Messenger, an intern for the paper, said at first he thought the gunshots were fireworks. After the second pop, he ran with his colleague Selene San Felice to the back door, which was locked.
“That door is never locked from the inside out,” he said, “And as soon as that happened it signaled to me, ‘OK, this is intentional. Those are shots.’ “
Mr. Messenger explained that he tried to call the police once he was sheltering under a desk, but he felt it was too dangerous.
“I was not able to talk to them. I did not feel that I could do it in a manner that wouldn’t tip off our location to the shooter,” he said.
He described how he sent word to the police through a friend not on the scene, and then offered up his phone to Ms. Felice.
“In that moment I thought I was going to die, I thought we were going to die,” Mr. Messenger said.
His coworker was the one who actually sent the now-viral tweet because the emergency line was overwhelmed, Mr. Messenger explained.
Active shooter 888 Bestgate please help us— Anthony Messenger (@amesscapgaz) June 28, 2018
“It’s a testament to her and her awareness in that moment,” he said.
The intern described walking out of the office, which was “in shambles,” when police arrived, and passing fallen colleagues.
“It’s unfortunate that somebody would come into a place that only reports truthful stories that are fact-based and unleash hell on the office,” Mr. Messenger explained.
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