The killings of seven in Half Moon Bay are labeled as an act of ‘office violence’

The slayings of seven individuals, gunned down in a small Northern California metropolis, was an act of “office violence” that victimized members of the “migrant neighborhood,” officers mentioned Tuesday.

Suspect Chunli Zhao, a 66-year-old resident of Half Moon Bay, labored at Mountain Mushroom Farm, certainly one of two agricultural companies the place employees have been killed on Monday afternoon, authorities mentioned.

“The one recognized connection between the victims and the suspect is that they might have been co-workers,” San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus advised reporters in close by Redwood Metropolis. “All the proof we now have factors to this being the occasion of office violence.”

5 of the fatally wounded victims have been males, Corpus mentioned at a later information convention. Two have been ladies. A person who was hospitalized with life-threatening wounds Monday was in secure situation, she mentioned.

Zhao was arrested within the car parking zone of a sheriff’s substation in Half Moon Bay shortly after the assaults.

“The semi-automatic handgun was legally bought and owned,” Corpus mentioned.

FBI brokers arrive on the scene of a capturing on Monday in Half Moon Bay, Calif.Justin Sullivan / Getty Photographs

Sheriff’s investigators additionally mentioned they’re struggling to inform family members of victims who have been described as “members of the migrant neighborhood,” who have been of Asian and Hispanic descent.

“As a few of these victims have been members of our migrant neighborhood, this represents a singular problem with regards to notifications (of survivors) and identifications,” Corpus mentioned.

Robert Tripp, particular agent accountable for the FBI’s San Francisco area workplace, mentioned the company offered technical and forensic assist within the capturing’s aftermath. The bureau was transitioning to offering victims’ companies, he mentioned.

Whereas investigators didn’t instantly disclose what, if any, felony file Zhao might need, it did not rise to any stage of great concern, officers mentioned.

“I’ll say there have been no particular indicators that may have led us to consider that he was able to one thing like this and he was not recognized to us,” sheriff’s Capt. Eamonn Allen mentioned.

Zhao, who investigators had initially mentioned was 67, is scheduled to make his first courtroom look on Wednesday afternoon.

District Legal professional Steve Wagstaffe referred to as Monday’s assault the worst in San Mateo County historical past.

“We have by no means had one on this county of this many deaths … at one time,” the prosecutor mentioned. “So it is a very hectic scene.”

The scenic coastal metropolis of roughly 11,000 is understood for its farms — there are greater than 100 within the space, in keeping with state Sen. Josh Becker, whose district contains Half Moon Bay — and many individuals from out of city go to for its winter squash.

“Lots of you come right here for pumpkins and ignore the farm employees,” Half Moon Bay Vice Mayor Joaquin Jimenez advised reporters Tuesday. “Not immediately.”

California Gov. Gavin Newsom recalled chatting with migrants from China who noticed the capturing however did not perceive what they have been witnessing.

“They thought they have been appearing,” Newsom mentioned. “They’d by no means heard a sound like that. They’d by no means seen a scene like that. They did not know the right way to comprehend a gunshot wound.”

“Solely in America can we see this sort of carnage,” he added.

President Joe Biden provided prayers for the victims and mentioned in a press release: “For the second time in latest days, California communities are mourning the lack of family members in a mindless act of gun violence.”

The Half Moon Bay slayings have been in the midst of a horrific 72-hour interval of gun violence throughout California and the nation.

  • A person in Monterey Park, an Asian-majority suburb of Los Angeles, gunned down 11 individuals at a Lunar New Yr dance occasion late Saturday evening, authorities mentioned.
  • A dozen individuals have been wounded early Sunday morning when gunfire erupted in a Baton Rouge, Louisiana, bar, police mentioned.
  • Two college students, 18 and 16, have been gunned down Monday afternoon at a constitution college in Des Moines, Iowa, that is tailor-made for deprived youths and has shut ties to police, authorities mentioned. An 18-year-old was arrested and faces two counts of homicide.
  • Lower than 5 hours after the Half Moon Bay shootings started, gunfire erupted 40 miles away in Oakland the place one individual was killed and 7 have been injured, police mentioned.
  • Three individuals have been gunned down early Tuesday morning at a Circle Ok comfort retailer in Yakima, Washington, officers mentioned. A 21-year-old suspect was discovered lifeless Tuesday.

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