A second shooting incident targets a group of Asians in California

A second shooting incident targets a group of Asians in California
A second shooting incident targets a group of Asians in California
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Half Moon Bay, San Mateo, California (United States) (AFP) – US police are investigating a new shooting incident in California that targeted a group of people of Asian descent and killed seven people on Monday in two agricultural sites, after a first incident that killed 11 people at the end of last week in a discotheque, whose motive is not yet clear.

“I was at the hospital visiting the injured in a mass shooting when I was informed of another shooting. This time in Half Moon Bay. Tragedy after tragedy,” California Governor Gavin Newsom wrote on Twitter.

San Mateo County Sheriff Cristina Corpus said the 67-year-old Shunli Zhao, who is suspected of carrying out the shootings at two farms near San Francisco, was arrested.

It said the seven victims were Chinese farm workers and an eighth person was seriously injured, adding that a semi-automatic pistol was found in the arrested man’s car.

The tragedy occurred less than 48 hours after a similar shooting, when a 72-year-old man of Asian descent stormed the Star Ballroom Dance Studio in Monterey Park, 600 km to the south, and fired 42 bullets, killing 11 men and women over the age of all. about fifty years.

After the massacre, which also left nine wounded, the shooter called Ho Kan Tran tried to commit another massacre in a nearby disco, but one of the guards stripped him of his weapon, so he fled before committing suicide in his pickup truck when the police surrounded him.

“No motive” is known

Many questions remain unclear regarding the suspect.

Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said his criminal record only mentions one arrest, in 1994, for illegally carrying a firearm.

Photo dated January 21, 2023 from the scene of the shooting in Monterey Park, California © Frederick J. Brown / AP

“We have no motive yet,” he admitted during a press conference on Monday.

Investigators are currently investigating links between the killer and the targeted dancers, especially possible relationships he had within them, the Los Angeles Times reported, citing police sources.

A local businessman told AFP on Sunday that the massacre may have been caused by jealousy.

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“His wife was invited to the party,” said Chester Chong, who knows one of the dance instructors at the disco, adding, “Maybe he was angry and jealous.”

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“a man without problems”

The residents seemed stunned by what happened in the city near Los Angeles, which has a population of sixty thousand people, most of whom are of Asian origin.

Ho Kan Tran’s ex-wife, who met him twenty years ago at the same disco, told CNN that he had immigrated from China to the United States, adding, “He was not violent, but he sometimes got angry if he felt offended.”

A former friend of his also said that he used to go regularly to the discotheque even though he was “hostile to many people there” accusing them of “saying hateful things about him.”

During his visit to Monterey Park on Monday, the California governor denounced the out-of-control proliferation of weapons in the United States.

“This is a shame,” the Democratic governor said, adding, “We should do better, we should chart the way for the world and not just respond to these countless crises over and over again.”

Gun violence is a major crisis in the United States, with more than 600 shootings targeting a group of people in 2022, according to the Gun Violence Archive.

The shootings have revived debate over gun controls, although there has been little progress in Congress on adopting reforms.

More than 44,000 people died of gunshot wounds in 2022, and more than half of them committed suicide.

One in three adults in the United States owns at least one gun, and one in two adults lives in a household with a gun.

© 2023 AFP

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