TonightWUSA 9 NEWS had a fairly long story on the Woodbridge campus NVCC shooting. There were several articles with updates and interviews on their website. It is hard to imagine just how lucky we really were yesterday. According to one of the WUSA 9 articles:

MANASSAS, Va. (WUSA) — A former high school teammate says suspected shooter, Jason Hamilton, was a “quiet” person who ran varsity track in high school.

“We used to have pasta parties at his house before [track] meets,” says 19-year-old Jarrod Zong. He says he graduated last year with Hamilton from Hylton High School.

Hamilton has been charged with shooting inside a classroom in NOVA’s Woodbridge campus, Tuesday, Dec. 8, 2009.

“Definitely one of the nicest people on the team. Just a quiet guy. I ran with him four years. Athletically, he came out of his shell. I didn’t see it coming,” says Zong.

9NEWS NOW saw Zong drop off flowers on the door of Hamilton’s house at the 14000 block of Baneberry Circle in Manassas.

Zong says he ran track and cross country with Hamilton. He says the track team was a second family to the suspected shooter.

9NEWS NOW obtained the charging documents from Prince William County Court. The documents indicate that Hamilton brought a bag with a hunting rifle into the classroom. He shot and missed the professor, Tatyana Krvchuck, twice. Hamilton later confessed to his actions

Someone meaner than a junk yard dog is fairly easy to predict. You know to stay away from them. You understand the danger. So many people seem to have sleeper cell personalities. Nowadays it seems that you hear more and more about seemingly nice, decent people going off the deep end, over the edge, and going on a psychotic rampage. This behavior presents quite a problem when the bizarre, outrageous behavior seems to errupt from out of nowhere.

Yet we continue to hear guns rights folks talk about the rights of lawabiding citizens. The problem is, everyone thinks they are a lawabiding citizen. Technically, Jason Hamilton was a lawabiding citizen. He hasn’t been convicted yet so I suppose he still is. How do we balance the rights of the individual and the rights of society? We have 2nd amendment rights to protect as well as those hippa rights that keep ones mental and physical business confidential. We have people being killed just going about their normal everyday lives like those individuals at Fort Hood. A jammed gun is probably what kept the NVCC math teacher alive.

Where do we draw the line? How do we ensure rights and at the same time, protect society?  A nice quiet kid on the track team just missed being a homocidal maniac, yet no one seemed to know.  He could be any of our kids.


From ABC 7 regarding the shooting incident:


The fact that he bought his gun near the camputs the day before makes this story even more chilling.  How many people will want to teach any subject, much less math?

41 Thoughts to “You Just Never Know–What Makes a Person Snap?”

  1. Diversity Gal

    I know this isn’t a response to this thread, but did anyone see Law & Order SVU tonight? It was all about the immigration debate and the effect of conservative pundit influence on Americans.

  2. Poor Richard

    I’m about to snap! The WaPo keeps reporting the shooter is “from Manassas” when
    he is, in fact, a Hylton HS grad with a Dale City address.

  3. Lafayette

    PR-I too am about to snap! Baneberry Cl has Manassas address, complete with a Manassas zip code of 20112 and it’s situated in the Neabsco Magisterial District in the County of Prince William. You really need to get over the fact that “Manassas” is NOT just limited to the City of Manassas. I’m a proud Manassas resident of PWC, not the City of Manassas. I find your swipes at the county Manassas addresses a bit old. You just need to accept the fact that there are Manassas addresses that do NOT lie within the City limits. In fact Rolling Rd on the county side of 234 has a 20110 zip code, just like you folks in the city. Funny how you want to bash Manassas of the county at your pleasure, yet you have NO problem claiming Manassas when it comes to the Battle of Manassas which was fought mostly in the county. You can’t have both ways.

  4. Poor Richard

    At best, the article should have noted the shooter lived “near Manassas”.
    It is a sign of lazy inept reporting to get facts wrong.
    My intention is not to “bash” anyone, but to have clear correct facts reported.

    Layfayette, you apparently pay taxes and vote in Prince William County
    which means you live in the Neabsco District of Prince William County –
    NOT in Manassas. That is a fact.

  5. Opinion

    All a Manassas address with a 20112 zip code means is that the post office servicing that address happens to be in Manassas. I have this zip code; however, I know it doesn’t make me a tax paying, city Government and issue voting citizen of Manassas. When I am asked where I live, I always say Manassas as a bit of shorthand knowing I’m not really a resident of the city. For the record, 20112 also covers part of the Coles District.

  6. Just out of curiosity, if your post office address says Manassas, and you turn into a shooter, axe murderer or just are asked where you live, what are you supposed to say?

    Does it really matter where we pay taxes? The Bobbitts lived in the county but Manassas sure got on the map because of them. I was out of town when it happened and was giving someone a check for a purchase. They asked for my autograph because they saw I was from Manassas. I said NO and just looked at them. How ridiculous, but the incident sure did make everyone sit up and take notice. Also I notice more people know how to pronounce Manassas since the Bobbitts and the sniper (which also happened in the county.)

  7. Opinion

    If I were a reporter and the perp’s address was Manassas, I’m guessing I would report Manassas. Like I said, it’s “shorthand” for describing where someone lives. In fact, I know it actually only describes the post office where someone sends my mail. For the record, I prefer explosives to the options you offered.

    Just curious… does anyone use Prince William County, Virginia in their address line (for a personal residence)?

  8. Lafayette

    Poor Richard, I understand, respect and admire your love for the City of Manassas. However, you do always seem to bring up it’s “near Manassas”. The fact is,sir, that we in the county do have Manassas addresses, thus meaning we live in Manassas albeit in PWC,but it’s MANASSAS none the less. The other fact is that I live in the Gainesville District and could be in the City of Manassas in about 8 minutes on foot. That’s right I do pay taxes to PWC, and love the City of Manassas just as much as Manassas in PWC. I’ve dontated quite of few hours of my time to the residents of the City of Manassas facilitating Neighborhood Circles and would not limit my involvement of OUR community to just to PWC nor do I feel that PWC is better than the City of Manassas. My family had lived in the City of Manassas since the early 1940’s, then in 1968 my parents made to bold move to WestGate. They chose to move to WG because of the accessibility of 66 to ease the commute to Langley for my mother daily. I have a grandmother, aunt, and a score of cousins that still live in the City of Manassas.

  9. Lafayette

    Heck no!! I use Manassas, VA 20109. I do find myself starting to write 22110(old zip).
    Right you are about the zip 20112. Just like Manassas addresses actually are in four of our eight magisterial districts(Gainesville, Brentsville, Coles, and Neabsco).

  10. Opinion

    Has this conversation turned into a discussion of who is a legal resident of Manassas (and who is not)? Perhaps we need to carry some kind of ID? Give cops the right to check who is “legal” within the borders of Manassas when using its services? Look at how Manassas taxpayer dollars are supporting people who are not legal residents? How ironic how it always boils down to arbitrary borders and the tribes that result.

  11. Not sure. There does need to be a way to say where we live. If I say I live in the county, that covers a lot of turf. If I say I live in Manassas, that obviously means the City of Manassas. I do not. What’s a girl to do? I feel like a woman without a city.

  12. Opinion

    For anyone who grew up in the country on a Rural Route, calling the post office that handles your mail and is listed as your address “home” is the natural thing to do. City folks may not be used to that model.

  13. Excellent point, Opinion. I never did but I knew people who had those RR addresses as well as RFD # (rural free delivery?)

    When I was a young kid, I lived off Rugby Road in Charlottesville. We moved away 5 years, came back and I lived out in the county off of Rio Road. I still had a Charlottesville address and said I was from Charlottesville, even though I was probably 3-4 miles outside the city limits. I had a regular street address.

  14. What do we call Dale City? It isn’t a city or a town. Is it a region? an area? How would we describe it?

  15. Poor Richard

    Although Manassas, as a city of close to 39,000 people has its
    share of challenges, the media too often “shorthands”
    problems of a large chunk of Prince William County as “Manassas”.
    PWC, of course, is a far larger jurisdiction in land area
    and population. This, to the modestly informed, can easily make
    Manassas City seem far worse than it is. Last week
    a couple were quoted saying they would never move to Manassas
    because of “all the problems in Coverstone”. Geesh.
    Misinformation leads to misunderstanding and hurts in
    attracting the good residents and business we seek.

    I certainly don’t dislike PWC or its fine citizens. My goal is simply
    to support fairness for the City of Manassas .

  16. Lafayette

    Dale City is a neighborhood and an area of Prince William County.

  17. Poor Richard

    MH – Dale City is, of course, not a “city” or even an incorporated town –
    it is a general area. Same for Woodbridge, Lake Ridge, Lorton,
    Gainesville, Nokesville and Centreville, etc.

  18. Lafayette

    PR, I can sympathize with the fairness part of distinguishing the city from the county. Prime example…Senor Fernandez’s sign was addressing a policy in the county, but the City of Manassas took the hit for that. I’ve been very vocal about this point since the very first sign. Bottom line is we have to share the media inaccuraces with regards to what is called “Manassasas”.

    I hear with regards to Coverstone. Just as I don’t like my PWC portion of Manassas having to be confused with GTS of the City of Manassas. The best we can do as those that know is to distinguish the difference in threads and articles such as these.

    Please, don’t misunderstand me thinking you dislike PWC and/or it citizens. I do think at times you come off as a little arrogant when you start with it’s not the City of Manassas, therefore it’s not Manassas.

  19. Opinion

    So… what is a person from Manassas? …a manassassinian? I learned in Indianapolis (from an Indianapolite) that there’s a bit of “science” (rules) to the answer.

  20. Poor Richard

    Arrogant ?

    May God have pity on those who live outside the Holy City.

  21. Lafayette

    I said you come off that way when you want to disassociate the city of Manassas from the surrounding area of Manassas in the county. As you well know the City is located in the county of Prince William. Can the City really claim to detatch itself from the county when they share quite a few services with the county?

    You really are missing my point. That both portions of Manassas have to do their fair share of “damage control” for the other portion’s activities. I just don’t see people from the county screaming, but’s the City of Manassas, not Manassas in PWC. We are a community and our community consists both portions of Manassas. One is really no better than the other they both have their problems.

  22. Poor Richard

    Alas, you miss my point – attempting to protect the city from unfair attacks
    and being blamed for things that happen primarily within the borders of PWC.

    Couldn’t we have have Help Save Westgate (where Greg L. lives) or
    9500 Dale Blvd. (near where Fernandez lives)? Nooo – both county residents
    had to act out in Manassas City – to our detriment.

    And lazy reporters label any criminal and/or bizarre event anywhere in
    PWC as “Manassas”. Enough.

    Anyway, back to the shooting at the WOODBRIDGE campus of NoVa.
    Thank goodness the rifle jammed – we were blessed – that could have
    so easily been another campus horror story.

  23. Opinion

    …never did trust those Manassites… they take our jobs… steal our womenfolk… bust up our bars… I know they sneak around at night stealing Christmas decorations off of Dale City yards… we need better borders between the City and the County.

  24. Lafayette

    PR, I don’t miss your point at all. As, I said both portions have to defend unfair attacks.
    Once again, you don’t have your facts straight. I don’t live in Neabsco, and Greg doesn’t live in WG. He lives in abutting Sudley, not WG. I’m glad your brought up HSM, I know that name has always rubbed you wrong. However, let’s face both portions of Manassas had and continue have serious issues. I do think things have improved over that last couple of years.

    I’ll give you that there are indeed lazy reporters. I must say in recent years the local paper does try to distinguish the two by saying “near Manassas” when talking about the county portion. Now, if we could only school our other local media.

    Yes, back to the scheduled programming….We are indeed blessed that the rifle jammed. We sure don’t need a Tech tradedy in OUR community. I’m also, thankful for the quick response from the campus police and of course the PWCPD.

  25. Lafayette

    Opinion :…never did trust those Manassites… they take our jobs… steal our womenfolk… bust up our bars… I know they sneak around at night stealing Christmas decorations off of Dale City yards… we need better borders between the City and the County.

    Yeah, they are a pesky bunch..those Manassites. Especially those natives.

  26. Ah ha! Even the Manassas Campus of NVCC, isn’t.

  27. Why is everyone tip-toeing around that name that Manassas folks are known by to the rest of Northern VA? I include myself in that rather unattractive name.

  28. Poor Richard

    FYI -old land records refer to the area between Dumfries and Manassas as
    the “Dum-ass” section of Prince William County.

  29. Lafayette

    I think that’s the City portion they use that tip-toed term for. 🙄

  30. It looks like I can’t get Lafayette to say that word that you all are tip-toeing around. Come on, one of you all man-up and say the word….

  31. I am sure Independent Hill will be glad to learn they are dum-asses. LOL Too funny.

  32. RingDangDoo

    >>>So… what is a person from Manassas?


  33. Poor Richard

    -Canova, Catharpin, Buckhall – all small settlements began when we were far more rural
    and transportation not nearly as good. Still remember the irate letter to the
    paper from an upset lady who had seen bumper stickers for
    “See It All At Buckall Mall” and decided to drive down from Centreville with her
    kids for a day of shopping only to find “Buckhall Mall” was an old general store.
    Most of us thought it was a clever marketing idea.
    -And of course Bristow, that Greg L. confused with Bristol, hundreds of miles away,
    in a posting,that, because of the error, was quite funny.

  34. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Moon-howler :
    What do we call Dale City? It isn’t a city or a town. Is it a region? an area?

    If I recall correctly, the most proper term would be “$hitHole”.

  35. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    RingDangDoo :
    >>>So… what is a person from Manassas?

    Dude….Good One!!

  36. RingDangDoo

    @Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Just saying the word that MH was baiting for in post #30. 😉

    I don’t suffer from shame, so I can say it. 🙂

  37. Lucky Duck

    Actually, Dale City is zoned as an “RPC” or “Residential Planned Community”. That is the legal definition of it.

  38. Ring said it. I couldn’t get the others in the earlier conversation to say it. My kids have said it for years with great glee. I couldn’t get PR or Lafayette to type those words. 🙄

    Lucky Duck, what is Woodbridge then? That is not even an incorporated town is it?

    Woodbridge just IS, isn’t it?

  39. There is an update posted above regarding the motivating for this shooting. Apparently the guy had been in class about 10 minutes before he took out the rife and started firing. I don’t understand how he missed or how the other students got out.

    He bought the gun the day before at Dicks near the campus. This is a very chilling story. The near catastrophe makes me shudder.

  40. Lucky Duck

    Yes, MoonHowler, Woodbridge is the result of years old zoning, simply zoned residential.

    But Dale City was approved in its entire form, years before it would eventually be built out. You used to be able to buy ADC Map Books with the preplanned roads already on them, years before they were actually biult. When it was approved, it was a new zoning category for PWC. Its zoning included pre-planned schools, fire houses, parks and of course, roads.

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