Shoppers, guard among 10 dead in Buffalo supermarket attack – The Durango Herald
Shoppers on a weekend afternoon and a retired police officer working as a security guard were among 10 shot and killed at a Buffalo supermarket by a white teenager who authorities say was motivated by racial hatred
BUFFALO, NY (AP) — Shoppers on a weekend afternoon and a retired police officer working as a security guard were among 10 shot and killed at a Buffalo supermarket by a white teenager who authorities say was motivated by racial hatred.
Police say Payton Gendron shot dead a total of 11 black people and two white people on Saturday during a rampage at Tops Friendly Market that the 18-year-old broadcast live before turning himself in to authorities.
Among the dead was security guard Aaron Salter — a retired Buffalo police officer — who fired multiple shots at Gendron, Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said Saturday. A bullet hit the shooter’s armor, but had no effect. Gendron then killed Salter, before chasing other victims.
Ruth Whitfield, 86, the mother of retired Buffalo Fire Marshal Garnell Whitfield, who told the Buffalo News her “mother was a mother to orphans,” was also killed.
“She has been a blessing to all of us,” he added.
Katherine Massey, who had gone to the store to do some shopping, was also killed, according to the newspaper.
It was not immediately clear why Gendron traveled approximately 200 miles from his Conklin, New York, to Buffalo and this particular grocery store, located in a predominantly black neighborhood, but screenshots claiming to be from the Twitch broadcast appear to show a racial epithet scrawled on the rifle used in the attack, along with the number 14, a likely reference to a white supremacist slogan.
At the previous press conference, Erie County Sheriff John Garcia called the shooting a hate crime.
“It was pure evil. It was (a) a racially motivated hate crime by someone outside of our community, outside of the city of good neighbors, walking into our community and trying to inflict this harm,” Garcia said.
Twitch said in a statement that it ended Gendron’s broadcast “less than two minutes after the violence began.”
The massacre sent shockwaves through a volatile nation plagued by racial tensions, gun violence and a wave 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 attack came just a month after another mass shooting on a Brooklyn subway train injured 10 people and just over a year after a mass shooting at a Colorado supermarket in killed 10.
Gendron, confronted by police in the vestibule of the store, put a gun to his neck but was convinced to drop it. He was arraigned later on Saturday for murder, appearing before a paper-robed judge.
A law enforcement official told The Associated Press that investigators are looking into whether he posted a manifesto online. The official was not authorized to speak publicly on the matter and did so on condition of anonymity.
Buffalo police declined to comment on the document, widely circulated online, which purports to describe the attacker’s racist, anti-immigrant and anti-Semitic beliefs, including a desire to drive all non-Europeans out of the United States. United. He said he was inspired by the man who killed 51 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in 2019.
Associated Press writers Michael Balsamo and Eric Tucker in Washington contributed to this report.