The Buffalo Supermarket Shooting Suspect Has Been Charged With Domestic Terrorism And 20 Counts Of Murder
Authorities have said that the 18-year-old suspect targeted the Tops supermarket in a Black neighborhood in Buffalo, traveling hours to carry out the shooting.
The 18-year-old suspect in the Buffalo supermarket shooting that killed 10 people and injured three was charged with domestic terror and murder as a hate crime on Wednesday, court records show.
A grand jury indicted Payton Gendron on one count of first-degree domestic terrorism motivated by hate, 10 counts of first-degree murder, 10 counts of second-degree murder as a hate crime, three counts of attempted murder as a hate crime, and one count of criminal possession of a weapon.
The suspect is scheduled to be arraigned on Thursday afternoon at the Erie County Court.
The Erie County District Attorney's Office confirmed to BuzzFeed News that an indictment was reported to the court Wednesday but declined to comment on the charges. The suspect's attorney, Brian Parker, did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Investigators have said that the suspect traveled more than 200 miles to a Black neighborhood in Buffalo to carry out the shooting on May 14, which he streamed live on Twitch. He had allegedly posted a hate-filled screed online prior to the shooting, invoking the racist "great replacement" conspiracy theory that white people such as himself were being systematically "replaced" by nonwhite people.
Authorities said that he targeted the lone supermarket in a Black neighborhood in Buffalo, and they believe that he was in the city the day before the shooting, doing "reconnaissance" of the neighborhood and the store.
He was arrested outside the Tops supermarket after shooting 13 people, 10 of whom died.
"It was straight up a racially motivated hate crime," Erie County Sheriff John Garcia said at a press conference after the shooting. "This person was pure evil."
The Tops supermarket shooting was the deadliest in 2022 until another 18-year-old gunman shot up an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, just 10 days later, killing 19 children and 2 adults. Like the Buffalo shooting suspect, the alleged shooter in Texas bought the weapon he used to carry out the attack legally.
Gun violence in the US is a public health crisis, according to the American Public Health Association. It is a leading cause of premature death in the country, responsible for more than 38,000 deaths annually. In 2022, 18,068 people have died from gun violence so far, according to data from the Gun Violence Archive.