BREAKING: A Georgia man was given four life sentences after pleading guilty to all charges in the shooting deaths of four of eight victims at an Asian spa. Robert Aaron Long could still face the death penalty if convicted in four more shooting deaths.
CANTON , Ga. (AP) — A man accused of killing eight people, most of them of Asian descent, at Atlanta -area massage businesses pleaded guilty Tuesday to four of the murders and was handed four sentences of life without parole.
In comments sure to further frustrate those outraged over Long’s apparent targeting of Asian women, a prosecutor reiterated Tuesday that Cherokee County investigators saw no evidence of racial bias. That’s at odds with the hate crime enhancement that Long, who is white, faces just miles away in the four deaths in Atlanta.
“This was not any kind of hate crime,” District Attorney Shannon Wallace said.The judge, while accepting the plea deal, also appeared to cast doubt on that notion, underscoring that Asians were among the victims.“But what is also true is that you harmed people who were not in those categories because once hatred is given a gun, it doesn’t matter who gets in the way,” said Cherokee County Superior Court Chief Judge Ellen McElyea.
In Atlanta, Long could be sentenced to death if convicted in the four other shooting deaths. There, he also faces charges of domestic terrorism in addition to murder, and prosecutors have said they will seek to have the deaths classified as a hate crime. headtopics.com
Wallace explained that Cherokee County prosecutors came to a different conclusion. When Long walked through the massage business in Woodstock “shooting anyone and everyone he saw,” Wallace he was motivated by a “sex addiction” and his desire to eliminate sources of temptation at the businesses where he engaged in sex acts.
As for gender bias, Wallace said a hate crime enhancement based on hatred of women would not have significantly extended his sentence.The American Psychiatric Association does not recognize sex addiction in its main reference guide for mental disorders. While some people struggle to control their sexual behaviors, it’s often linked to other recognized disorders or moral views about sexuality, said David Ley, clinical psychologist and author of “The Myth of Sex Addiction.”
Wallace said prosecutors planned to seek the death penalty if Long didn’t plead guilty. All the relatives of the victims that they’ve been able to contact supported the plea deal in the interest of swift justice, she added.The prosecutor said the defendant signed a plea deal admitting to all of the charges in Cherokee County, where he was accused of malice murder, felony murder, attempt to commit murder and aggravated assault.
Police have said the attacks began when Long shot and killed four people, three of them women and two of Asian descent, at Youngs Asian Massage just before 5 p.m. on March 16. He also shot and wounded a fifth person, they say.Long then drove south to Atlanta, where he shot and killed three women at Gold Spa before going across the the street to Aromatherapy Spa and fatally shooting another woman, police have said. All of the Atlanta victims were women of Asian descent. headtopics.com
Those killed at the Cherokee County spa were: Xiaojie “Emily” Tan, 49; Daoyou Feng, 44; Delaina Yaun, 33; and Paul Michels, 54. The Atlanta victims were: Suncha Kim, 69; Soon Chung Park, 74; Hyun Jung Grant, 51; and Yong Ae Yue, 63.Long said he had planned to kill himself that day and went to the massage businesses thinking that paying for sex — which he considered hateful — would push him to do it.
“I was scared of killing myself and wanted to try to overcome that so I could,” he told the judge Tuesday.But at some point while sitting in his car outside the first spa, he decided to kill the people inside.He said he was driven by a desire to “punish” the people who worked there.
Long is scheduled to appear again next month in Fulton County, where District Attorney Fani Willis filed notice that she intends to seek what is called a hate crime sentence enhancement.Georgia’s new hate crimes law does not provide for a stand-alone hate crime. After a person is convicted of an underlying crime, a jury determines whether it was motivated by bias, which carries an additional penalty.
The 19-count Fulton County indictment includes charges of murder, felony murder, aggravated assault and domestic terrorism.Police said that after the shootings at the two Atlanta spas, Long got back into his car, and authorities said he intended to carry out similar crimes in Florida. headtopics.com
By then, Long’s parents had called authorities to help after recognizing their son in still images from security video that the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office posted on social media. His parents were already tracking his movements through an application on his phone, the prosecutor said, and that enabled authorities to track their son down.
Long told police his attack was not racially motivated, and a Cherokee sheriff’s spokesman said it did not appear to be a hate crime, prompting widespread skepticism and outrage at the time.Cherokee sheriff’s Capt. Jay Baker also drew criticism for saying Long had “a really bad day,” and was removed from the case.
State Rep. Bee Nguyen, the first Vietnamese American to serve in the Georgia House and a frequent advocate for women and communities of color, said the shootings appeared to be at the “intersection of gender-based violence, misogyny and xenophobia.”___
This story has been updated to correct that the shooting happened in March 2021, not 2020. Read more: The Associated Press »
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YourAnonNews Worst beard ever. This could make one change ones mind about the death penalty I hope he gets bailed half way into his entire 4 life term! He doesn't deserve mercy . Live in prison is not enough. He is going to have a hellish time in prison fighting his sexual urges! His evangelical Christian mom must have pulled on his pecker told him to only use his pecker when married.
Laboratories need live specimens to test on. Would end suffering on our furry friends
Georgia man pleading guilty to 4 of 8 Asian spa killings CANTON , Ga. (AP) — A Georgia man accused of killing eight people at three Atlanta -area massage businesses was pleading guilty in Cherokee County on Tuesday, hoping for a sentence of life without parole to the first four of the shooting deaths. 😳 Looks exactly like every other white supremacist in real life. lmao A white guy this time. Weird.
Georgia man pleading guilty to 4 of 8 Asian spa killingsA Georgia man accused of killing eight people at three Asian massage businesses entered a guilty plea to all charges on Tuesday to the first four of the shooting deaths, hoping for a sentence of life without parole. A prosecutor said Cherokee County investigators saw no evidence of racial bias, which is at odds with the hate crime enhancement he faces in Atlanta , and is sure to frustrate observers outraged over his apparent targeting of Asian women in the shootings. “This was not any kind of hate crime,” District Attorney Shannon Wallace said. death penalty He was on a mission to kill hookers
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