Asian women among 8 killed in separate spa shootings in Atlanta

Thursday, 18 Mar, 2021

Robert Aaron Long has taken responsibility for the fatal shootings of multiple people at three Atlanta-area massage parlours.

At least eight people, many of them women of Asian descent, were killed and one injured in shootings at three spas in Atlanta area, police said.

"The reported shootings of Asian American women on Tuesday in Atlanta is an unspeakable tragedy - for the families of the victims first and foremost, but also for the AAPI community - which has been reeling from high levels of racial discrimination", said the statements.

Authorities said the man accused in the shootings told police his act was not racially motivated and that he potentially had a "sex addiction".

Jane Kim Coloseus, 32, grew angry Wednesday when Atlanta police declared it was too soon to say whether the slayings were racially motivated.

Jeremy Lin is "heartbroken" by the recent killing of six Asian women near Atlanta, Georgia, on Tuesday.

A separate statement from the Atlanta Police Department said the suspect was connected to all the attacks by video evidence from the crime scenes. Civil rights groups have suggested that former President Donald Trump contributed to the trend by repeatedly referring to the coronavirus as the "China virus" because it first emerged there.

"As an Asian woman, it brings out a lot of the experiences or harassment we have received throughout our lives in general, and just have that completely invalidated because of what the suspect is saying", said Coloseus, a Korean American who is executive director of the nonprofit Her Term, which recruits women to run for office in Georgia.

Five people were shot Tuesday at a massage parlor in Acworth, 30 miles north of Atlanta, four of whom died. He was also reaching out to Asian-American partners who joined local Jewish groups in pressing for the passage a year ago of a state law that would enhance penalties for hate crimes, as well as to the Japanese and Korean consulates in the city. Instead, officials told reporters that Robert Aaron Long, of Woodstock, said he was a frequent visitor of massage parlors and meant to eliminate the temptation he thought they posed.

A suspect identified as Robert Aaron Long 21 was captured in Crisp County after a manhunt
A suspect identified as Robert Aaron Long 21 was captured in Crisp County after a manhunt

But apparently Capt. Baker couldn't help himself from telling the country the that the victims' alleged killer was just "having a really bad day", when he reportedly chose to hunt them down and shoot them.

Crisp County Sheriff Billy Hancock said in a video posted on Facebook that his deputies and state troopers were notified Tuesday night that a murder suspect out of north Georgia was headed toward their county.

"Although the shooter's motive is not yet clear, the identity of the victims underscores an alarming rise in anti-Asian violence that must end", Obama tweeted.

The Florida locations were somehow connected to pornography, police said on Wednesday without revealing more details.

"I know that Asian Americans are very concerned", Mr Biden said, though he stressed any motive had "yet to be determined". "We asked him that specifically, and the answer was 'no'".

According to law enforcement on Tuesday night, a 21-year-old white male has been taken into custody after leading police in a short vehicle pursuit roughly 150 miles from the scene of the initial shooting.

"The president has been briefed overnight about the horrific shootings in Atlanta".

Vice-President Kamala Harris offered condolences to the victims' families.

Police in several major cities saw a sharp uptick in Asian-targeted hate crimes between 2019 and 2020, according to data collected by the Center for the Study of Hate & Extremism at California State University, San Bernardino.