Steven Jones, NAU Suspect: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know
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Steven Jones, NAU Suspect: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know

Steve Jones Instagram page

Suspected shooter Steven Jones. (Instagram)

An 18-year-old freshman who poses with firearms on his Instagram page has been named as the suspect in a shooting that killed one student and injured three more this morning at Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff. Steven Jones, described by one acquaintance as “a really nice kid,” is in police custody. According to one report, Jones left the scene of a fight early on the morning of October 9 and returned with a gun, opening fire from a distance.

He has been charged with one count of first degree murder and three counts of aggravated assault. Investigators do not think that this is a case of self-defense. Jones’ bail has been set at $2 million, cash only.

Heres what you need to know about Jones and the shooting at NAU:


1. Jones Was Tackled by Students After Opening Fire With a Handgun, Say Witnesses

Police say gunfire rang out around 1:20 a.m. local time after a fight outside the Mountain View Hall dormitory, which, according to the school’s website, “encompasses 18 of the 23 social Greek organizations on campus.” Shortly after, Jones was arrested without a struggle. The school was never placed on lockdown.

According to this Facebook post from an NAU student, Jones had been kicked out of a party and returned with a vengeance:

Steven Jones was kicked out of a party. He came back with some friends and started to fight with the victims. One was dead on arrival, one was shot in the stomach and lung, one was shot in the neck, straight through, and I can’t recall where the last one was shot. They’re all in surgery.

Speaking Heavy.com, Jones’ friend, Moriah Wester said that she spoke to the suspect on the night of October 8 and that he was studying in the library and “completely sober.”

The Arizona Daily Sun also reported that the fight broke out after a party. A witness told the paper:

We had just left a party and were standing in the street getting ready to walk home when a guy walked up with a pistol and just started shooting. … I heard five or six shots and then my friends just tackled him. They got him really quick. We were leaving and it all happened on the sidewalk across from Mountain View.

steven jones, northern arizona university shooting, NAU shooting

In the caption for this Instagram photo, Jones wrote, “It’s a full auto kinda day #guns #summer #shotamachinegun #nbd.” “Full auto” presumably refers to his setting the rifle to fully automatic. When one of his friends commented, “You’re a turd,” Jones responded, “Turd with a gun.”

A man named Mark White told NBC Phoenix that Jones “was a really nice kid. I can’t believe he would have done something like this.”

According to NAU Police Chief Greg Fowler, the shooter used was a handgun. Fowler added, “We don’t know what caused the confrontation.”


2. All 4 Victims Were Members of the Delta Chi Fraternity

Nick Prato Northern Arizona University Victim

One of the shooting victims, Nick Prato. (Facebook)

Rumors on Twitter spread fast that the shooting involved members of the school’s Delta Chi fraternity. Those rumors were confirmed by a statement from the frat, which read in part, “We have investigated the matter and can confirm that there were members involved.”

https://twitter.com/BriittanyDawn/status/652428887457005568

Authorities later named the victims as Colin Brough (deceased), Nicholas Prato, Kyle Zientek and Nicholas Piring. The surviving victims are being treated at Flagstaff Medical Center.

Colin Brough NAU Shooting Victim Funeral

Colin Brough. (LinkedIn)

According to his LinkedIn page, Colin Brough was an “associate member of The Delta Chi Fraternity, and a member of The Alpha Lambda Delta Honor Society.” He was a Business major at NAU. Brough listed his interests as “Lacrosse, hiking, snowboarding, boating, wake-boarding, basketball, new technologies, social marketing, and in general — being outside.” On his Facebook page, he says he’s a native of Annapolis, Maryland, where worked at Cantler’s Riverside, a seafood restaurant.

According to his Facebook page, Nick Prato is a native of Oceanside, California.

According to the fraternity’s website, there are over 107,000 members in the U.S. Delta Chi began at Cornell University in 1890 and is now based in Iowa City, Iowa.


3. ‘Guns Were Very Present in His Life From a Young Age’

https://twitter.com/TheStevenSoFar/status/643225967331176449

On his Twitter page, where he goes by the handle @TheStevenSoFar, Jones’ last meaningful tweet featured his complaint about the lack of manners in society. Ten days before that, he wrote, “The three Gs of college: Gains, Girls and Grades #realtalk.” Jones also maintained a Tumblr page called Northernish on which he posted photos of himself on vacation. On that page, Jones says he was part of the class of 2019 at Northern Arizona University. His Instagram page includes evidence of his enthusiasm for guns, especially hunting rifles and military-style rifles. He shared no pictures of handguns.

Steven Jones Instagram

(Instagram)

His friend, Moriah Wester, told Heavy.com that “I know guns were very present in his life from a young age in a state where guns are normal from house to house. But he was always safe and even was a certified safety instructor when it came to guns.” She added “He is easily one of the nicest people I’ve met and has never come to a confrontation with a gun or an intention to hurt someone.” Meanwhile on his Instagram page, one commenter wrote that “Steven is a trained gun safety instructor, and I have been in serious confrontations with him on my side.” Wester went on to say that Jones didn’t have a girlfriend but was friends with numerous girls.


4. Jones & Victim Zientek Went to the Same High School

Steven Jones Mugshot

Steven Jones’ booking photo. (Handout)

Investigators haven’t revealed the relationship between the suspect and the victims, however, Arizona Central reports that Jones and Zientek both attended Mountain Ridge High School in Deer Valley, but not at the same time. Zientek graduated from the school in 2013, while Jones was only there for a short time between January and April 2014.


5. This Shooting Comes a Week After Chris Harper Mercer Killed 9 People at Umpqua Community College

Chris Harper Mercer, dating, sex, romance, single, girlfriend, okcupid, tinder

Umpqua shooter Chris Harper Mercer. (Spiritual Passions)

The shooting comes eight days after a 26-year-old gunman killed nine people and then turned the gun on himself at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. Newsweek reports that the NAU shooting is the 46th school shooting in 2015.

According to KTRK-TV, there are more than 20,000 students at the Flagstaff campus of Northern Arizona University.

NAU, founded in 1899, is a public university with 27,000 students across its campuses, including the main Flagstaff campus. The school also has 36 satellite campuses across the state. In a statement, NAU President Rita Cheng said, “We are shocked and deeply saddened by this incident. Our thoughts are with the victims and their families, and our entire Lumberjack family.” Cheng later said that “classes would continue as normal Friday but this is not going to be a normal day.”

Steven Jones, NAU Suspect

The scene at the school on the morning after the shooting. (Screengrab via ABC 15)

80 Comments

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80 Comments

williampenn

This got a bigger write-up than the 378 murders in Chicago so far this year.

Arthur

How do you attach an associated article of the Oregon shooting here? This was nothing similar at all. A party after hours on a frat house location probably over a girl or drugs or too much drinking etc… Nothing like that farce of a shooting in Oregon.

Anonymous

1. Both on a college campus
2. Both with guns
3. Both ended in death
Does it really matter what motivated the shooter? We really do not know in either case.

Anonymous

Yes it matters what motivated him!
This was just a guy that reacted compulsively in anger to something. It happened at 0120 in the morning at a frat house, which we can probably speculate that alcohol was involved and things got out of hand, not to mention there was obviously no school even in session at this time.

It is no where in the vicinity of a crazed lunatic methodically planning a mass killing, in which he determines doing so based upon one’s religion, such as the Oregon shooter.

Anonymous

When people have free access to guns, they tend to solve their problems with guns. That’s the connection.

Arthur

When people have free access to cars they drive them… Free access to guns is no different a statement than the one with cars you retard. Cars don’t kill people, people kill people. Guns don’t kill people, people kill people. Any object can be used by a HUMAN to kill someone. You uneducated welfare dribblers of the state can’t do anything but post off your free odumba phone. Banning the only object that can protect your self, family, and community against a real threat like say your government is why it is so important to keep educated you little minds about the bigger picture. Guns have never jumped up in the heat of the moment and shot themselves killing anyone. It takes a person. Stop blaming the object an put accountability in the lap of the person!

Maryb

Awesome parallel Arthur. So since we are tested and licensed and insured as drivers, are you suggesting we have that measure for gun owners?

Steve Gamble

Nope. Driving a car is a privilege. The right to liberty is inalienable. Arms to protect that liberty were recognized by the men who wrote the A as critical to that function of protecting Life and Liberty.

Anonymous

Adherence to your beloved Constitution also means that slavery is okay and women can’t vote. Not every letter of the Constitution is realistic in this era. Things change. Guns certainly have. No founding father ever conceived of the weaponry readily available to anyone with the cash. We have to adjust our understanding of the establishing principles of this nation and take a realistic view of the times we live in. This isn’t the Wild West. This isn’t Gangland Chicago of the Thirties. This is now. And the rampant proliferation of guns will inevitably result in one thing – more death. Because guns are designed to do one thing.

Truth

The issue with the object is that guns make it super easy for people to kill people. It is the most cowardly way to do it but and it allows people to kill a mass group of people in a short period of time. So you see the issue is about the object.

williampenn

So, when they commit murder with knives, we should confiscate all knives?

Anonymous

Who said anything about confiscation? Did anyone say anything about confiscation? Oh, it was just the gun nuts. Are you gun nuts saying you want confiscation? Because you keep bringing it up when rational people want to talk about reasonable restrictions on the most dangerous commercial products ever conceived. So if you want it, let us know. Us rational people. We’ll be waiting. You know, with all of our government buddies who want to break down your door and take all your stuff. Watch out! We’re right outside your door now! Quick! Grab your AR-15! Boo! Pussies.

Sam Stewart

You progressive dirt bags always talk confiscation.
The FIRST thing Obama said last week after the Oregon tragedy is that gun homicides in Australia and GB went down after the government MADE the citizens turn in their guns.
This is a good idea to lib-tards and they would push it the first chance they got. Book it..

Anonymous

I’m not a progressive, or a libtard. I’m a conservative on virtually every single issue, except this one. Because this is the one issue where “conservatives” depart from the logic and common sense that is present in their other positions. This is the one issue that for the anti-gun control “conservative” is decided by irrational paranoia, money, and pure selfishness.

So you’ll have to plug your moronic “libtard” rhetoric into some other argument! Your position doesn’t hold water.

Candy Kane

When college students think that going to college means that they get to have a 4 your drunken binge, That’s the connection. When WILL, IF EVER, the young people learn that booze and alcohol do NOT equal fun?? Being out of control is NOT fun. You just don’t remember most of the stupid and reckless things you do while under the influence.

Anonymous

When people don’t have free access to guns, they don’t have freedom.

Rick McCargar (@RickMcCargar)

There are approximately 300 million guns in the hands of U.S. citizens, and well over 99% of those will never be used against a human, so no, you’re wrong….people with access to guns don’t “tend to solve their problems with guns.”

Marisa

You are correct! Guns need to be in the hands of all homeowners (and accessible and loaded) in the case of a break-in by armed or unarmed intruders. The innocent man MUST have a way to protect himself and his family. In particular, women need to be armed as well for self-protection. Our schools desperately need armed police or guards to protect students against crazy people, NOT against guns which are INANIMATE OBJECTS.

Joe Cool

Why does this NOT happen in Texas??…because we have a concealed carry gun law.

Zlo

Deaths always been one common problem solver since man, just opt yourself out of the homosapien equation, problem solved.
Nothings changing, ever.

Doe

I have free access to guns, I don’t tend to use them to solve problems

Anonymous

Access to guns is an old story. People used to take guns to school in the old days to hunt after school and never thought of killing someone.

Mamerto

How about TOO MUCH Indoctrination to VIOLENCE via Movies and TVs and Computer games.

Anonymous

It is true u idiot. Society and especially kids are so desensitized to violence because of the formentioned things

Justin

I have free access to guns. several. I carry on a daily basis. I have never even thought to solve a problem with a gun except when i was physically assaulted. even then i did not have to do more than show force. THIS. IS. A. PEOPLE. PROBLEM. Not a gun problem

Reality check

Effe you wanting disarm lawbiding Americans.
The government puts guns in the hands of criminals so it can take the out of the hands of it’s citizens. No it’s not a conspiracy theory. Obama actually did it, and still is.
Snowden has been labeled a traitor and is living in exile for exposing the government for illegally spying on it’s citizens.
Just another conspiracy theory, no.
The idea that if you’re not doing anything wrong then you don’t have anything to worry about is retarded.
There’s no disarming any countries citizens. You can only disarm the law abiding ones.

The police don’t protect and service, that idea is long done. They only arrest after the fact.
The police, DA, judges, Senate, Congress and the president are all corrupt.
If you’re not going to protect yourself and your family who do you think will.

jdl51

The Oregon shooter asked what religion his victims were, but didn’t discriminate because of it. Just curious I guess. Motivation doesn’t matter one whit. The fact is people are dead because someone lost it, had access to guns and started blasting away. Neither case makes any sense, but they rarely do.

Anna

I just have to say that I personally know Steven, my child went to School with Steven Jones and they were friends during high school. He is not a Malicious kid, he wasn’t into guns when my child knew him. This is something that is horrible but I can guarantee that Steven is not like other school shooters. He was a normal high school kid! Normal! And yes my child was close enough to know. They did drift apart after school, because my child hasn’t gone to college right away. But the photos of him, the first one looks like a Halloween costume- and if you people looked on his Facebook there’s over 200 photos to choose from- I’m sure there was a ton in his Instagram also- so to pick out 2 with him holding guns does not make him an 18 yr old obsessed with guns. He’s not and never was. He made the worst mistake of his life last night, but he didn’t do this to get “famous” he didn’t leave a note- he didn’t ask Christians to “stand up and if they said they were Christians, shoot them” this and the Oregon shooting are so Completelty Different!!! So different. And just because you found 3 things that are the same, well 1. Both Britney Spears and I have Children, 2. I’ve been to Disneyland and so has she, 3. I’ve also made a mistake and cut my hair too short- so I guess by your logic, I’m Britney Spears???

Anonymous

*facepalm*
The word “same” has two senses. One is literally the same thing. The other is very similar. No one is saying that this school shooting is literally the same as Oregon, just as no one would say you are the same as Brittany spears. They are saying it is very similar. The three reasons given are sufficient for that (ie they are relevant similarities).

Anonymous

Well my cousin was shot in the lungs and bled to death probably drowning in his own blood. The other victims were also shot in similar locations clearly with the intent for them to be murdeted as well. So for an 18 year old who you say was normal, he sure was “lucky” enough to hit his targets dead on from over 10 feet away, in the dark & like most of the comments indicate, was most likes drinking. For anyone that thinks that’s normal is just sad. He clearly had extensive experience shooting to have hit the victims with such accuracy. To suggest that shooting three people in cold blood was not malicious & a “mistake” is ludacris and overwhelming disrespectful to the victims & their families. Hopefully no one on your family is never murdered by “mistake”.

Anonymous

I am a family member of Colin Brough and because of this “mistake” this great kid as u say ruined my family. Maybe your passion should be used for the family members this psychopath has put through the worst time of our lives

Brenda

Thank you Anna! Ive known from the beginning that Steven had to be scared for his life to be forced to pull the trigger. He didn’t want to. The truth is starting to come out that this was self defense against numerous drunken, high, older frat brothers that felt empowered to bully, threaten and beat a sober Steven to a point of him despiration to protect himself and his friends. Get him out of jail!

luis

frat Those frat guys are always in some kind of crap . racism , rape they think the own the planet and they can treat people they think are not their equal like garbage , . This guy should have used a base ball bat . You can not just open up on people with a pistol

Anonymous

NAU banned all greek houses and moved them into the dorms. Mountain View is the all greek dorm, I don’t think they allow parties there.

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