Philadelphia journalist Josh Kruger was fatally shot at his home in the early hours of Monday. No arrests regarding the same were made at the time of writing this article. Following his sudden passing, his past tweets, where he downplayed gun violence in the city, went viral online.
Josh Kruger worked under the administration of Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney as a spokesperson for the Office of Homeless Services. Kenney released a statement following the 39-year-old’s death. The statement read as follows:
“Josh cared deeply about our city and its residents, which was evident both in his public service and in his writing. His intelligence, creativity, passion, and wit shone bright in everything that he did- and his light was dimmed much too soon.”
As Josh Kruger’s loved ones mourned the unexpected loss, netizens took to X (formerly known as Twitter) to investigate his tweets and shed light on his disbelief in gun violence and critique on law enforcement. In one of the many resurfaced tweets, Josh Kruger had written:
“Today, I learned there is apparently a “crippling crime wave destroying all cities” according to Stephen Miller, which includes presumably Philly. My house is not on fire and chaos is not reigning in the street. I saw a man get a parking ticker yesterday. My trash got picked up.”
Josh Kruger was a Philadelphia Weekly journalist
Josh Kruger called himself the “destroyer of stigma and bureaucratic silos” on his LinkedIn profile. Prior to becoming an independent journalist, he worked as a columnist and editor for the Philadelphia Weekly and Philadelphia City Paper. He went on to work for the City of Philadelphia as a content director for the Kenney administration and also as a communications lead and strategist in the Department of Public Health.
According to his LinkedIn, he was awarded the Society of Professional Journalists’ First Place Award for newspaper commentary in Pennsylvania in 2014 and 2015. In 2015, he was also awarded the Edith Hughes Emerging Journalist Award by the Pennsylvania NewsMedia Association.
Josh Kruger also revealed that he was a “militant bicyclist, Anglo-Catholic Episcopalian and parishioner at St. Mark’s Church on Locust Street.”
At the time of writing this article, he had amassed nearly 1500 followers on his official Instagram account.
Josh Kruger’s earlier tweets explored in wake of fatal shooting
X user @MrAndyNgo went viral on the social networking site after sharing screenshots of Kruger’s earlier tweets. His Twitter thread about the same has amassed over a million views.
In one of the many tweets collected by the X user, Kruger criticized law enforcement for “doing nothing.”
In another tweet Kruger said, “Now that I’m no longer in government I can finally say publicly it’s not wrong to punch Nazis.”
Speaking about the numerous people dying from Covid in Philadelphia, Kruger wrote in a tweet:
“Some idiot just said you’re more likely to get shot and killed than die of COVID in Philly to make some insensitive rhetorical point for “his side.” Folks, four times as many Philadelphians have died of COVID than gun shots this year. I understand math is hard but do better.”
Commenting about the shootings in Philadelphia yet again, Kruger also said in a tweet:
“Look, it’s that lawless land of liberals in Philly where shootings are… dropping to levels not seen in years.”
Response to Josh Kruger's death
District Attorney Larry Krasner released a statement after the journalist’s death. Speaking about his character, Krasner said that he “lifted up the most vulnerable and stigmatized people in our communities.”
Krasner also told said in his statement that it was "encouraging" to see Kruger, a member of the LGBTQ community who suffered from substance abuse and homelessness in the past, work for the Kenney administration.
Krasner also added that his office is working closely with the Philadelphia Police to ensure that the person behind the shooting “can be held to account in a court of law.”
An investigation into Kruger's death is currently ongoing.