Mayor Donna Deegan as well as other authorities have confirmed that there were a “number of fatalities” after a “racially motivated” shooting incident at a local store. The event prompted a large deployment of law enforcement and personnel in the Northwest Jacksonville, Florida area.
The shooting, at a Dollar General a short distance from Edward Waters University, became the site of a murder scene that claimed the lives of three individuals, according to local new station News4JAX.
The victims, all of whom were Black, were murdered by an assailant driven by a “repugnant ideology of hate,” said Jacksonville Sheriff T.K. Waters. The perp’s AR-15 even had swastikas drawn on it.
Sheriff Waters unequivocally labeled the incident as a manifestation of racial hatred, stating, “There is no ambiguity here – this shooting was motivated by racial prejudice, with the perpetrator harboring a deep-seated enmity towards Black individuals.”
Armed with both an AR-15-style rifle and a handgun, the assailant donned a tactical vest, methodically targeting and fatally shooting the three individuals – two men and one woman. Eventually, the perp turned the firearm upon himself.
Sheriff Waters said, “This is a dark day in Jacksonville’s history. As a member of this Jacksonville community, I am sickened by this cowardly shooter’s personal ideology of hate.”
Deegan said, “This is unacceptable. One shooting is too much but these mass shootings are really hard to take.”
Presently, specifics on the case were limited.
An eyewitness narrowly averted death because he left his money in his car. He went back to the vehicle, but heard gunfire coming from the inside of the Dollar General store.
The local community has been profoundly affected by this tragic episode, according to the authorities. There’s already been a prayer circle and vigil for those slain.
Councilwoman Ju’Coby Pittman expressed profound sorrow. “I’m tired of seeing all the shootings,” Pittman said tearfully. “The people in this community are hurting.”
The gunman died from a self-inflicted gunshot.