“This was pure evil,” Erie County Sheriff John C. Garcia said at a news conference Saturday, calling the shooting a “plain racially motivated hate crime by someone outside of our community.”
The US Department of Justice is investigating the shooting “as a hate crime and an act of racially motivated violent extremism,” according to a statement by US Attorney General Merrick Garland.
He pleaded not guilty.
Here’s what we know about the shooting suspect.
He wore tactical gear
Authorities say when the suspect arrived at the store around 2:30 p.m., he was heavily armed, wearing tactical gear, a helmet and had a camera showing his actions live.
The suspect used an assault weapon, Flynn said during the press conference.
In his press release, Flynn said the suspect shot four people, three fatally, outside the grocery store. As he entered the store, gunfire erupted with an armed security guard who authorities say was a retired Buffalo police officer. The security guard died from his injuries. The suspect shot dead eight other people at the store, six of whom died, the press release said.
He was reportedly live streaming on Twitch
Popular live streaming platform Twitch confirmed Saturday that the shooting suspect used their platform to stream a live feed during the attack.
The company said it was “devastated” to hear about the shooting, adding that the user “has been suspended from our service indefinitely and we are taking all appropriate action, including monitoring all accounts viewing this content.” broadcast again”.
CNN received part of the livestream showing the alleged shooter pulling up in front of a Tops store.
The video is taken from the point of view of the suspected shooter as he pulls into the supermarket parking lot. The person is seen in the rearview mirror wearing a helmet and is heard saying, “I just have to do it” before pulling into the front of the store.
The video shows shoppers walking through the parking lot as the suspect pulls up.
A spokesman for Twitch said the company removed the live stream less than two minutes after the violence began. The company did not immediately respond to follow-up questions about whether the suspect was actively firing when the live stream was paused.
The alleged manifesto speaks of the “dwindling size” of the white population
Investigators on Saturday reviewed a 180-page alleged manifesto posted online in connection with the shooting trial, two federal law enforcement sources told CNN.
The manifesto, which CNN obtained independently shortly after the attack and before authorities released the suspect’s name, was allegedly authored by a person claiming to be Payton Gendron, who confessed to the attack.
The manifesto’s author says he’s been buying ammunition for some time, but didn’t seriously start planning the attack until January. The author also elaborates on his perceptions of the dwindling size of the white population and claims of ethnic and cultural replacement of whites.
Part of the document is in question-and-answer form.
The Manifesto’s author attributes most of his beliefs to the internet and describes himself as a fascist, white supremacist and anti-Semite.
He is likely to face further charges
Gendron was charged with first-degree murder before Chief Justice of the Buffalo City Court, Craig Hannah, Saturday night, the district attorney’s press release said.
He pleaded not guilty, Hannah told CNN. If convicted, he faces life in prison without parole, the statement said.
And more charges could come, officials said.
“My office works closely with the US Attorney’s Office and our law enforcement partners regarding potential terrorism and hate crimes. This is an active investigation and additional charges may be filed,” Flynn said in a statement.
Gendron is scheduled to return to court for a felony hearing on the morning of May 19, the press release said. He will remain in detention without bail, it said.
CNN’s Sharif Paget, Sabrina Shulman and Brian Stelter contributed to this report.