An investigation continues after three people were killed at a Dollar General store in Jacksonville, Florida, on Saturday in what officials say was a racist attack.
All of the victims, two males and one female, were black. Angela Michelle Carr, 52, was shot in her car; A.J. Laguerre, 19, was an employee who was shot while fleeing; and Jerrald Gallion, 29, was a customer who was shot upon entering the store.
The shooter is also dead.
"The Clay County Sheriff's Office, who has been assisting our agency with this investigation, received information after the shooting that the shooter had authored several manifestos. One to his parents, one to the media, and one to federal agents. Portions of these manifestos detailed the shooter's disgusting ideology of hate. This shooting was racially motivated, and he hated black people," said Jacksonville Sheriff T.K. Waters.
Waters said the masked shooter, described as a white male in his 20s who was living with his parents in Clay County, Florida, and had no criminal record, used an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, a Glock handgun, and wore a bullet-proof vest. At least one of the weapons had a swastika painted on it.
"I want to be very clear that there is absolutely no evidence that the shooter is part of any large group. We know that he acted completely alone," said Waters.
According to Waters, the guns were legally bought in recent months despite being involuntarily committed for a mental health evaluation in 2017.
Waters said the gunman was seen at Edward Waters University, a historically black university, nearby shortly before the shooting putting on his gear.
"This is a dark day in Jacksonville's history. Any loss of life is tragic, but the hate that motivated the shooter's killing spree adds an additional layer of heartbreak. There's no place for hate in our community. And this is not Jacksonville. As a member of the Jacksonville community, I am sickened by this cowardly shooter's personal ideology of hate," said Waters.
Saturday’s shooting marks the latest racially motivated attack in the U.S.
Ten black people were fatally shot at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, last year.
And in 2019, 23 people were killed in a mass shooting that targeted Mexicans at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas.
The Jacksonville shooting also came on the same day thousands gathered on the national mall for the 60th anniversary of Martin Luther King Jr.’s March in Washington, D.C.
Martin Luther King’s oldest son reacted to the shooting and told CNN’s "State of the Union" the shooting was "inhumane" and "not American."
"We're seeing an emergence of things, and it's so tragic. We have got to, as a society, find a way to navigate through issues. You don't have to like me, but we have to understand how to deal civilly with issues, and we've got to do something to change that. And not tomorrow; we've got to do something now," said Martin Luther King III.
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