The FBI is investigating the mass shooting that left 10 people dead in a Tops Supermarket in Buffalo, New York as a hate crime and a case of “racially motivated violent extremism,” said Stephen Belongia, the special agent in charge of the FBI Buffalo field office.
Driving the news: Erie County Sheriff John Garcia called the attack a “straight-up racially motivated hate crime” after the alleged shooter, an 18-year-old white man, drove from “hours away” in tactical gear and opened fire in the store in a predominantly Black neighborhood of Buffalo on Saturday afternoon.
- The U.S. attorney for the Western District of New York Trini Ross also said the shooting would be investigated as a hate crime.
The suspect was identified in court as Payton Gendron from Conklin, New York, per the Erie County DA. He pled not guilty to murder in the first degree. Buffalo is a more than 200-mile drive from Conklin and police said he’d traveled “many hours” to conduct the attack.
- Law enforcement confirmed the suspect was livestreaming the shooting.
- 13 people in total were shot, 3 of whom are expected to survive. Eleven of the 13 people were Black, police said.
- Tops operations manager Shonnell Harris told the Buffalo News that the shooter was a white man wearing camouflage. “He looked like he was in the Army,” Harris said.
- Police said a security guard fired at the shooter as he entered the store but due to the shooter’s body armor, the bullet did was not able to stop him. The security guard, described by police as “beloved,” was later killed.
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said President Biden had been briefed on the shooting.
Editor’s note: This is a developing story and will be updated.