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Killing of three white men in California city racially motivated
20 April 2017, 05:44 | Laverne Osborne
Reports: Shooter kills 3 in downtown Fresno, Calif.
Kori Ali Muhammad's criminal history includes arrests for gun possession, theft and drug charges.
Muhammad was charged in 2005 with possessing cocaine with intent to distribute, court records show.
He claimed insanity after being charged with possessing cocaine with intent to distribute in 2005, and his attorney requested a psychiatric examination, saying Muhammad "appeared eccentric with some freakish beliefs".
The third victim, a 59-year-old man, was gunned down in the parking of the Catholic Charities building. He posted on social media about black separatism, reparations, the "Black Lives Matter" movement and white devils. A man shot and killed three people on the streets of downtown Fresno on Tu.
Police Chief Jerry Dyer said Wednesday that the carnage began as Kori Ali Muhammad killed a security guard at a motel Thursday.
One victim was shot Tuesday while sitting in a utility truck.
Dyer said officers asked Muhammad why he chose to surrender.
David Jackson, 58, died at the scene.
"There is every reason to believe he acted alone", Chief Dyer said, adding that there is no evidence so far to suspect a terrorism motive. He told officers that he is Muslim, but he prays to seven different gods; and he practices voodoo, Dyer said.
"We it is a hate crime". Despite the suspect's alleged views, Federal Bureau of Investigation officials have not yet labeled the killings as a hate crime, though Dyer believes they were. He is also charged in the death of Carl Williams, 25, a Motel 6 security guard, over a fight between himself, a woman he was visiting and the hotel staff, the Fresno Bee reported.
"I want to make a desperate plea to that individual to turn himself in", Dyer said.
The handgun that police say Muhammad used, a 357 Magnum, is still missing.
When speaking to his mother Tuesday, Dyer said, Muhammad told her not to cry because "he is still alive, his magic is powerful, and then he started laughing".
"What he told our detectives last night, was that once he saw he was wanted for the murder he was not going to go down for shooting a security guard for disrespecting him".
"As he spoke about the shooting and shooting individuals, he did so in a very callous manner", Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said. Dyer said someone else might've picked it up.
The suspect then fled and hid on a gas station roof.
"So, I'm very, very, very grateful that I was able to say goodbye, maybe not at that moment, but prior to that", she said.
Dyer says Muhammad fired a total of 16 shots.
When he noticed the driver was Latino he intentionally targeted the white man in the passenger seat, 34-year-old Zackary Randalls, killing him and sparing the driver. He told her loved her too.
A man wanted in the slaying of a security guard set out to kill as many white people as he could on Tuesday, gunning down three men on the streets of downtown Fresno before he was captured and admitted to the shootings, authorities said.
Mark Gassett had just picked up groceries at a Catholic Charities building when he was gunned down.
"I did it. I shot them", Muhammad told officers as they arrested him, according to the chief.
Prosecutors say the suspect in a racially motivated shooting rampage in Fresno could be arraigned on murder charges by the end of the week.
Police say the 39-year-old, who is black, singled out white victims and killed them at random. Then, Muhammad shot a white man standing on the sidewalk, then stood over him and shot him two more times as he laid on the ground - that was 37-year-old Mark Gassett, a father of two.
Randalls was an exceptional father and "loved his two kids with everything that he had", longtime friend Eddie Valencia said.
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