8 People Killed in Atlanta During Suspected Anti-Asian Shootings
17 Mar 2021
A 21-year-old man suspected of carrying out three shootings at three separate massage parlors in Atlanta has been arrested.
The man, a white male, is said to have killed 8 people with 6 being Asian women. The first shooting happened at about 17:00 (21:00 GMT) on Tuesday at Young’s Asian Massage in Acworth, Cherokee County resulting in two people dying at the scene and two out of the three taken to the hospital pronounced dead later that day.
Capt Jay Baker of Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office confirmed the victims were two Asian women, a white woman and a white man, and said a Hispanic man had been wounded.
About an hour later, police responded to a “robbery in progress” at Gold Spa in north-east Atlanta.
“Upon arrival, officers located three females deceased inside the location from apparent gunshot wounds,” police said.
Officers were then called to a spa across the street, named Aromatherapy Spa, with another woman shot dead, all four victims being Asian women.
Suggestions are that the shootings are tied to the surge in anti-Asian violence particularly in the US since the start of the coronavirus pandemic.
The police said the gunman claimed that he had not targeted his victims because of their race, but they cautioned that it was too early in the investigation to be sure that the motivation wasn’t racial.
“He does claim that it was not racially motivated,” Capt. Jay Baker said. “He apparently has an issue, what he considers a sex addiction.”
“Whether it’s senseless violence that we’ve seen play out in our streets, or more targeted violence like we saw yesterday, a crime against any community is a crime against us all,” Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms of Atlanta said.