THE heroic security guard Aaron Salter Jr was mourned in Buffalo, New York as one of ten killed in a horrific Tops Friendly Markets mass shooting this afternoon, reports say.
Payton Gendron, 18, wearing tactical body armor and a helmet as he entered the Tops Friendly Market shortly after 2.30 pm, allegedly opened fire on Saturday, killing ten – including Salter.
Heroic security guard Aaron Salter Jr was mourned in Buffalo, New York as one of ten killed[/caption]
Salter, a retired Buffalo Police Department cop pictured right, was named as the first victim after the alleged teen gunman opened fire after driving five hours to the grocery store.
“Today is a shock,” his son, Aaron Salter III, told The Daily Beast in Lockport, a suburb of Buffalo.
“I’m pretty sure he saved some lives today. He’s a hero.”
In a CBS broadcast earlier this evening, Salter’s heroic efforts to stop the alleged shooter were praised by both the mayor and his former colleagues.
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Earlier, Eerie County Sherrif John Garcia explained that Gendron drove five hours to that specific area, which is a predominately Black community.
Gendron is from Conklin, a community about 200 miles southeast of Buffalo.
When he exited the car he was heavily armed and wearing tactical gear along with a camera that he used to live-stream the shooting.
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Before entering the store, Gendron shot four people in the parking lot, three of which died.
In total, 13 people were shot and 10 were killed. Only one store employee was killed.
The additional three people who were shot had non-life-threatening injuries.
Buffalo police entered the store and confronted the gunman, police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said at a news conference.
“At that point, the suspect put the gun to his own neck. Buffalo police personnel — two patrol officers — talked the suspect into dropping the gun.”
“He dropped the gun, took off some of his tactical gear, and surrendered at that point. And he was led outside, put in a police car,” he said.
One of those killed was a former Buffalo police officer who had been working as a security guard inside the store. He engaged in gunfire with the shooter, but Gendron was wearing armor so he was not hurt.
Gendron was arrested by police at the scene, the sources said after officials initially reported that he died.
The rifle used was legal to buy in New York, but it was modified with illegal accessories. This was most likely done in Pennsylvania where these modifications are legal.
Authorities worked to quickly get Gendron arraigned on Saturday night.
During the arraignment, he wore a paper gown and a mask and was barefoot.
His lawyer told the judge he was pleading not guilty to the charge of murder in the first degree. His lawyer also requested a forensics exam.
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The judge denied bail. After the hearing, the lawyer working with him told WIVB4 he was assigned to represent Gendron by the courts.
He will be back in the courtroom on Thursday morning.
More to follow…
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