Half Moon Bay taking pictures suspect faces seven homicide expenses

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California authorities determine six of the seven victims, as US reels from mass shootings and gun violence ‘epidemic’.

The accused gunman in a mass taking pictures that left seven folks lifeless at two northern California mushroom farms within the United States has been charged with seven counts of homicide and one in every of tried homicide.

Chunli Zhao, 66, was the lone suspect in Monday’s taking pictures, which authorities described as  “workplace violence”, within the city of Half Moon Bay near San Francisco.

The expenses towards Zhao have been introduced on Wednesday, hours earlier than he was set to look in court docket for the primary time.

The Half Moon Bay tragedy was the second main mass taking pictures in California in three days. On Saturday, 11 folks have been fatally shot within the Los Angeles space city of Monterey Park amid Lunar New Year celebrations.

The San Mateo County coroner’s workplace recognized six of the seven victims within the Half Moon Bay taking pictures on Wednesday, and officers mentioned there have been some migrant staff amongst them.

The victims have been: Zhishen Liu, 73, of San Francisco; Marciano Martinez Jimenez, 50, of Moss Beach, California; Aixiang Zhang, 74, of San Francisco; Qizhong Cheng, 66, of Half Moon Bay; Jingzhi Lu, 64, of Half Moon Bay; and Yetao Bing, 43, whose hometown was unknown.

The seventh sufferer was “tentatively” recognized, however the identify has been withheld as authorities work to inform relations, the coroner’s workplace mentioned.

Servando Martinez Jimenez mentioned his brother Marciano Martinez Jimenez was a supply individual and supervisor at one of many farms. He by no means talked about Zhao or mentioned something about issues with different staff.

“He was a good person. He was polite and friendly with everyone. He never had any problems with anyone. I don’t understand why all this happened,” Martinez Jimenez advised the Associated Press information company.

Martinez Jimenez had lived within the United States for 28 years after arriving from the Mexican state of Oaxaca. His brother Servando mentioned he’s working with the Mexican consulate to get his brother’s physique home.

Authorities say Zhao acted alone on Monday when he entered a mushroom farm the place he labored in Half Moon Bay, taking pictures and killing 4 folks and critically wounding a fifth. He then drove to a close-by farm the place he had labored beforehand and killed three extra folks, mentioned Eamonn Allen, a sheriff’s workplace spokesperson.

The expenses embrace extra elements that might consequence within the demise penalty or life in jail with out parole, however Governor Gavin Newsom has issued a pause on executions in California.

Those elements embrace that Zhao used a gun, prompted nice bodily harm, killed a number of folks and had a previous felony conviction. No extra particulars have been supplied on the prior felony.

The high-profile massacres in California — two of the 40 mass shootings the nonprofit Gun Violence Archive has recorded within the US for the reason that begin of 2023 — have renewed calls to curb gun violence, as a number of Democrats advocated for stricter gun laws.

“We are only 25 days into 2023 and 1,230 people have died from gun violence in the United States so far,” Congressman Sean Casten, an Illinois Democrat, wrote on Twitter. “69 of these deaths were in mass shootings. This is unacceptable. It’s time for an #AssaultWeaponsBan NOW.”

Democrat Congresswoman Sara Jacobs, who represents a California district, additionally known as for motion towards gun violence.

“Today we observed a moment of silence for the victims of the Lunar New Year shooting in Monterey Park,” she mentioned in a social media publish. “But silence, thoughts, and prayers won’t bring back the 11 lives lost or ease their families’ healing. We need to take action and finally end the gun violence epidemic.”