Reuters global editor apologizes for telling Trump ‘blood is on your hands’ after Annapolis shooting

An editor at the international news agency Reuters apologized late Thursday night after saying to President Trump on Twitter that “blood is on your hands” shortly after a deadly mass shooting at an Annapolis newspaper that left five people dead. 

In a Thursday afternoon tweet that has since been deleted, global and breaking news editor Rob Cox wrote, “This is what happens when @realDonaldTrump calls journalists the enemy of the people. Blood is on your hands, Mr. President. Save your thoughts and prayers for your empty soul.” 

{mosads}Cox was responding to Trump releasing a statement on Twitter saying his “thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families” after being debriefed on the situation at the Capital Gazette newspaper. 

The gunman who has apprehended by local police, Jarrod Ramos, 38, had previously sued the newspaper for defamation in 2012. The case was later thrown out by a judge. Ramos lost his appeal in 2015. 

Cox deleted the tweet after considerable backlash and later apologized for not keeping with Reuters’ Trust Principles” and allowing his emotions to lead him to making a “snap judgment” surrounding the shooter’s motivation. 
“When I saw the news today that a mass shooter had targeted the employees of a newspaper in Maryland I responded emotionally and inappropriately,” Cox wrote. 

“Though my comments were entirely personal, they were not in keeping with the Reuters Trust Principles and my own standards for letting facts, not snap judgments, guide my understanding,” he continued. 

“My experience as a member of the community of Newtown, Connecticut in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook tragedy, combined with the possibility that my colleagues in the press were being targeted, pushed me into a state of emotional distress,” he added. 

In 2012, 20 elementary school children were killed by a lone gunman in Newtown.

“I am sorry for my comments, which I quickly deleted and have disavowed, and especially remorseful if they did anything to distract from the thoughts and love we must send to the community of Annapolis,” Cox concluded.

Reuters Editor-in-Chief Steve Adler said the agency does not condone Cox’s behavior and “will take appropriate action.” 

“Earlier this evening, Reuters Breaking niews Editor Rob Cox tweeted about the shooting in Annapolis, Maryland. He has since deleted the tweet and apologized,” said Adler. “Mr. Cox’s actions were inconsistent with the Thomson Reuters Trust Principles requiring journalists to maintain freedom from bias. We do not condone his behavior and will take appropriate action.”

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