The last thing anyone ever wants or needs is a mass shooting of some description. That’s especially true while gun control legislation is worming its way through the congressional process.
Unfortunately, we sometimes get stuff we don’t want or need.
Last night, a man in Atlanta went on a rampage at a couple of spas.
Police arrested a suspect after eight people were killed in shootings at three separate massage parlors in the Atlanta area Tuesday.
Two spas were in Atlanta and one was in Cherokee County. Police said six of the eight victims were Asian women; Cherokee County officials confirmed to 11Alive there is one suspect for all of the shootings.
Four people were killed and one other was wounded at Young’s Asians Massage Parlor, on Highway 92 near Bells Ferry in Cherokee County, at around 5:00 p.m., officials said. When deputies got there, according to Capt. Jay Baker with the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office, they found two people who were dead inside, with three others still alive. Emergency crews rushed the three to the hospital, but two of them have since died. The identities of those who were killed have not yet been released, but officials described two as Asian women, one as a White woman and one as a White man. The person still hospitalized was a Hispanic man, officials said.
Shortly after, about 30 miles south, shootings at two Atlanta massage parlors that are across the street from each other on Piedmont Road near Cheshire Bridge left four dead. Atlanta Police said three people were killed at the Gold Spa. The fourth person was killed across the street at the Aromatherapy Spa. Those calls came in at 5:47 p.m. and 5:57 p.m., according to Atlanta Police Department’s call sheet. APD said it appears the four victims are all Asian women. Although the call came in as a robbery, interim Atlanta Police Chief Rodney Bryant said they are still investigating the motive.
Tuesday evening, Cherokee officials released surveillance pictures of [suspect’s name removed], 21 of Woodstock and asked the public for help locating him.
While police are unsure of the motive, they’re looking into the possibility of this being a hate crime.
In recent months, a lot of media attention has been focused on anti-Asian hate crimes. Of course, many of those were crimes where Asian-Americans just happened to be the victims but weren’t necessarily targeted. However, there may well be something to the claims. Especially in light of a global pandemic that originated in Asia. Far too many dipsticks will see the origins of COVID and decide Asians are responsible because these dipsticks are idiots.
And there’s some indication that the numbers of these racially-motivated crimes being under-reported.
Right now, though, we know next to nothing. We don’t know if the alleged killer had some personal motive or whether it was racially-motivated. We simply don’t have enough information.
Since the suspect was captured alive, we may well get answers as to what happened and why.
Don’t expect to actually understand this kind of thing, though.
However, there will be questions raised in the aftermath of this, such as how this will impact the gun control bills up for consideration in the Senate. It will also be interesting to see how this impacts the gun debate here in Georgia.
We’ll be keeping an eye on this story moving forward.
(Edit at 3/17 at 12:14 PM Eastern): Just for clarity’s sake, it appears that the motive was not race.
New: Cherokee Co. Sherrif’s Department out with a statement. They say they interviewed the alleged shooter in Atlanta last night and he said it wasn’t about race…it was about his blaming women at these parlors for his addiction to sex. pic.twitter.com/lF766mj2IT
— Hayes Brown (@HayesBrown) March 17, 2021
In other words, it looks like this had more to do with the possibility these spas were “massage parlors,” if you know what I mean. If so, then there’s unlikely to be any racial component other than Asians tend to be those employed at these kinds of places.
(Edit 3/17 at 2:19 PM Eastern):
Police officials said the investigation is ongoing, but the events were not believed to have been racially motivated. Instead, they believe Longopened fire because he saw the locations as “an outlet for him” to succumb to purported sex-addiction temptations, Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Capt. Jay Bakersaid during a news conference.
“He apparently has an issue, what he considers a sex addiction, and sees these locations as …. a temptation for him that he wanted to eliminate,” Baker said.
[The shooter], 21, was allegedly on his way to Florida at the time of his Tuesday night arrest and indicated he was potentially going “to carry out additional shootings,” Mayor Keisha Lance Bottoms said at the news conference.
While some are really beating the racism drum, a drum I pondered myself, it doesn’t look like that’s the case. If anything, it was the shooter’s belief that all such spas were really just fronts for prostitution, which might have had some racial tinges, but not directly racism.
However, the idea that he may have intended to carry out other attacks is terrifying, as was the potentiality that this was really just a spur of the moment decision.