Daily US Times: Eight people, at least six of them are Asian women, have been killed in shootings at three different spas in the US state of Georgia.
Local police said four people were killed at a massage parlour in Acworth, a suburb north of Atlanta, and four more at two spas in the city itself.
A 21-year-old man had been arrested and was believed to be the suspect in all three attacks, according to the police.
No motive for Tuesday’s shootings has yet been discovered.
Hate crimes, however, against Asian-Americans have spiked in recent months, fuelled by rhetoric that blames Asian people for the spread of coronavirus.
President Joe Biden in a speech last week condemned “vicious hate crimes against Asian-Americans who have been attacked, harassed, blamed and scapegoated.”
The first shooting happened at about 17:00 at Youngs Asian Massage Parlor in Acworth, Cherokee County.
Sheriff’s office spokesman Capt Jay Baker said three people were taken to hospital and two people died at the scene. Two more died in the hospital. He later confirmed that the victims were two Asian women, a white man and a white woman, and that a Hispanic man had been wounded.
Police were called to a “robbery in progress” at Gold Spa in north-east Atlanta less than an hour later.
Police said in a statement: “Upon arrival, officers located three females deceased inside the location from apparent gunshot wounds.”
While there, police were called to a spa across the street, called Aromatherapy Spa, where they found another woman shot dead.
Rodney Bryant, Atlanta Police Chief, said it appeared that the victims were Asian. Reuters reported that, in the Cherokee County attack, a white woman and a white man were among those killed.
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