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10 dead in Buffalo supermarket attack police call hate crime – Press Telegram

By CAROLYN THOMPSON, JOHN WAWOW, MICHAEL BALSAMO and DAVE COLLINS

BUFFALO, NY (AP) – An 18-year-old white man wearing military equipment and broadcast live with a helmet camera opened fire with a rifle at a Buffalo supermarket, killing 10 people and injuring three others on Saturday in what authorities described as “for racial reasons.” violent extremism. “

Police said they shot 11 black and two white victims before surrendering to authorities in a riot that they broadcast live on the Twitch broadcast platform.

He later appeared before a judge in a paper medical gown and was charged with murder.

“It is my sincere hope that this individual, this white supremacist who has just committed a hate crime against an innocent community, will spend the rest of his days behind bars. And heaven will help him in the other world as well,” he told Governor Kathy Hochul, speaking near the scene of the attack.

The massacre sparked shockwaves through an unstable nation, prey to racial tensions, armed violence and a series of hate crimes. The day before the shooting, Dallas police said they were investigating a series of shootings in Koreatown as hate crimes. The Buffalo bombing came just a month after another mass shooting at a Brooklyn subway train injured 10 people.

The alleged gunman in Saturday’s attack on the Tops Friendly Market was identified as Payton Gendron, of Conklin, New York, about 200 miles (320 kilometers) southeast of Buffalo.

It was not immediately clear why Payton had traveled to Buffalo and that particular grocery store. A clip apparently from his Twitch feed, posted on social media, showed Gendron arriving at the supermarket in his car.

The gunman shot four people outside the store, killing three, Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said. Inside the store, a security guard who was a retired Buffalo police officer fired several shots, but a bullet that hit the gunman’s bulletproof vest had no effect, Gramaglia added.

The gunman killed the guard, the commissioner said, and then walked through the store shooting at other victims.

“This is the worst nightmare any community can face, and we’re hurting and we’re boiling right now,” Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown told a news conference. “The depth of the pain that families are feeling and that we all feel right now cannot be explained.”

Police entered the store and confronted the gunman in the lobby.

“At that point the suspect put the gun to his own neck,” Gramaglia said. Two officers convinced him to drop his weapon, the commissioner said.

Twitch said in a statement that it ended Gendron’s broadcast “less than two minutes after the violence began.”

At the previous press conference, Erie County Sheriff John Garcia described the shooting as a hate crime.

“This was pure evil. It was (a) a crime of racial hatred of someone outside our community, outside the City of Good Neighbors … entering our community and trying to inflict that evil on us,” Garcia said.

Witnesses Braedyn Kephart and Shane Hill, both 20, entered the parking lot just as the shooter was leaving. They described a white man in his late teens or twenties wearing full camouflage, a black helmet, and what looked like a rifle.

“He was standing there with the gun in his chin. We were like, what the hell is going on? Why does this kid have a gun in his face?” Kephart said. He dropped to his knees.

Tops Friendly Markets released a statement saying, “We are shocked and deeply saddened by this senseless act of violence and our thoughts and prayers are with the victims and their families.”

Officials said the rifle Gendron used in the attack was legally bought, but that it was not allowed to sell in New York the magazines it used for ammunition.

The shooting occurred just over a year after an attack in March 2021 on a King Soopers supermarket in Boulder, Colorado, that killed 10 people. Investigators did not disclose any information about why they believe the man charged in the attack was targeted at the supermarket.

NAACP President Derrick Johnson issued a statement calling the Buffalo shooting “absolutely devastating.”

“Our hearts are with the community and all those who have been affected by this terrible tragedy. Hatred and racism have no place in America. We are shattered, very angry and pray for the families and loved ones of the victims,” ​​he added.

The Rev. Al Sharpton has called on the White House to convene a meeting with black, Jewish and Asian leaders “to emphasize that the federal government (is) stepping up its efforts against hate crimes.”

At the White House, press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said President Joe Biden was receiving regular updates on the shooting and investigation and offered prayers with the first lady for the victims and their loved ones.

“The president was briefed by his National Security Adviser on the terrible shooting in Buffalo, NY this afternoon. He will continue to receive updates throughout the night and morning as more information develops,” he said.

Attorney General Merrick Garland was briefed on the shooting, Justice Department spokesman Anthony Coley said.

More than two hours after the shooting, Erica Pugh-Mathews was waiting outside the store, behind the police tape.

“We would like to know the condition of my aunt, my mother’s sister. She was there with her boyfriend, they separated and went to different corridors, “she said. “A bullet barely missed him. He was able to hide in a freezer but couldn’t get to my aunt and doesn’t know where she is. We’d just like to talk anyway if he’s okay.”

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Associated Press reporters Eric Tucker in Washington and Aaron Morrison in New York City contributed to this report. Balsam reported from Washington and Collins reported from Hartford, Connecticut.

10 dead in Buffalo supermarket attack police call hate crime – Press Telegram Source link 10 dead in Buffalo supermarket attack police call hate crime – Press Telegram

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