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At least 10 dead in Buffalo supermarket shooting

BUFFALO, NY (AP/WIVB/NEXSTAR) – At least 10 people were killed in a mass shooting at a Tops Markets grocery store in Buffalo, New York, according to law enforcement officials who spoke with the ‘Associated Press, in addition to Buffalo Font.

The suspect was identified as Payton Gendron, of Conklin, about 200 miles southeast of Buffalo, officials told AP. Witnesses reported that Gendron, an 18-year-old white male, was wearing military-style clothing in addition to the bulletproof vest, police said.

Police say at least 13 people were shot dead. Four people were employees of the store, according to officials. Of the victims, 11 were black and two were white. One of the victims was a recently retired police officer who worked as a security guard at the store, officials said.

The shooter entered the supermarket with a rifle and opened fire, according to an official who spoke to the AP. Investigators say he was broadcasting the shooting live and investigating whether he posted a manifesto online, the official said.

The FBI is investigating the shooting as a hate crime and racially motivated violent extremism, officials said on Saturday.

The supermarket is in a predominantly black neighborhood about three miles north of downtown Buffalo. The surrounding area is mostly residential, with a Family Dollar store and a fire station near the store.

Braedyn Kephart and Shane Hill, both 20, pulled into the parking lot just as the shooter exited. They described him as a white male in his late teens or early twenties wearing full camouflage, a black helmet, and what appeared to be a rifle.

“He was standing there with the gun to his chin. We were like what’s going on? Why does this kid have a gun to his face? Kephart said. He fell to his knees. “He ripped off his helmet, dropped his gun and was tackled by the police.”

Police sealed off the block, lined with onlookers, and yellow police surrounded the entire parking lot.

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 status of my aunt, my mother’s sister. She was there with her fiancé, they split up and went down different aisles,” she said. “A bullet just missed him. He was able to hide in a freezer but he couldn’t reach my aunt and doesn’t know where she is. We’d just like a word anyway if she’s okay.

Kathy Hochul, Governor of New York State says she is monitoring the situation and offered assistance to local law enforcement. On Saturday afternoon, Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown told a press conference that he wanted to offer comfort to affected families but knew “there is no comfort.”

“Buffalo is known as the city of good neighbors – nationally and internationally,” Brown said. “This is a community where people love each other. The shooter was not from this community. In fact, the shooter traveled hours from outside this community to perpetrate this crime against the people of Buffalo – a day when people were enjoying the sun, enjoying family and friends, all kinds of happy activities… It’s a day of great pain for our community.”

Brown explained that this particular Tops store, given his strong patronage of the black community, is “near and dear to his heart” and that he and several local officials knew some of the people who were killed.

The shooting came just over a year after a March 2021 attack on a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colorado that killed 10 people. Investigators have not released any information on why they believe the man accused of the attack targeted the supermarket.

This is breaking news; please check for updates.


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