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People gather outside of Tops market on May 15, 2022 in Buffalo, New York. Yesterday a gunman opened fire at the store, killing ten people and wounding another three. Suspect Payton Gendron was taken into custody and charged with first degree murder. U.S. Attorney Merrick Garland released a statement, saying the US Department of Justice is investigating the shooting "as a hate crime and an act of racially-motivated violent extremism". (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
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Chuck D On Buffalo Shooting: "Is There A Hip-Hop Answer To What Has Happened?"

Chuck D On Buffalo Shooting: "Is There A Hip-Hop Answer To What Has Happened?"

A white 18-year-old shot and killed 10 people at a Buffalo supermarket on Saturday (May 14), in a mass shooting that has been reported as racially motivated. According to the Associated Press, the shooter, identified as Payton Gendron, had researched the local demographics while looking for places with a high concentration of Black residents.

The AP reports that law enforcement officials said on Sunday (May 15) that Gendron had arrived at the Tops Friendly Market at least a day in advance to conduct reconnaissance.

As details of the horrific tragedy were reported, Chuck D of Public Enemy tweeted his thoughts about the current climate and commentary.

"Is there a HipHop answer to what has happened in Buffalo?" Chuck tweeted. "Or has all the questions been asked yet unanswered by the culture especially the many OG artists who have the jewels of wisdom. To at least prepare masses to collectively prepare & be aware. When is important >popular?"

Gendron had previously threatened a shooting at his high school last June, a law enforcement official told The Associated Press.

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Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia reported that Gendron was brought in "for a mental health evaluation afterward." The authorities are examining a racist 180-page manifesto, that law enforcement says names Gendron as the gunman and details the plotted attack.

The manifesto reportedly champions the “great replacement” theory that argues immigrants are being intentionally brought into the U.S. to skew elections.

Known victims of the attack include: 32-year old Roberta Drury; Aaron Salter, a retired Buffalo police lieutenant who was working as a security guard at Tops; 86-year-old Ruth Winfield, the mother of Buffalo’s former fire commissioner, Garnell Whitfield; Katherine Massey; and 77-year-old Pearly Young, who ran a food pantry in the neighborhood.

CNN reports that family notifications have occurred, Commissioner Gramaglia said Sunday.

“We had a family reunification center, and we were able to provide all those notifications so that they can begin the grieving process,” Gramaglia explained. 

“There are warrants that have been obtained or warrants that will continue to be obtained both on the state and the federal levels. We'll be looking at extensive digital platforms, computers, phones, cameras and anything else that comes into play in this investigation. The crime scene is still being held and it will be held for as long as we need it."

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