Three men were having a seemingly ordinary day in downtown Fresno, California, before they were singled out at random and killed by a black gunman targeting white victims, police said.
While Kori Ali Muhammad, 39, was arrested in Fresno on Tuesday after firing 16 shots and killing three white men, the.357 Magnum revolver thought to have been used in the fatal shootings is now the focus of its own search.
"Once he saw that he was wanted for murder, he was not going to go down for shooting a security guard for disrespecting him but that he was going to kill as many white males as possible", Dyer said.
Prosecutors say they're waiting to file those charges while investigators assemble their case.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer on Wednesday implored the man thought to have picked up the murder weapon to turn himself in.
He claimed insanity after being charged with possessing cocaine with intent to distribute in 2005, and his attorney requested a psychiatric examination, saying Muhammad "appeared eccentric with some freakish beliefs".
During the shooting rampage, Muhammad fired several times at two Hispanic women in a auto, but he stopped shooting once he realized they were Hispanic and let them go, Dyer said. He was expected to be charged with four counts of murder and arraigned Friday.
Muhammad told officers at his arrest that he was the guy they were looking for, Dyer said.
Police were alerted to the scene Tuesday through ShotSpotter, a gunfire locator that detected multiple gunshots in the same vicinity, Dyer said Tuesday.
The police chief says Muhammad hasn't shown any remorse other than saying sorry to Dyer during his arrest. A memorial of candles and flowers honors victims of Tuesday's shooting outside Catholic Charities Wednesday, April 19, 2017 in Fresno, Calif. Mark Gassett, 37, of Fresno, had just picked up groceries at a Catholi.
It was reported by BBC news that he shouted "God is greatest" in Arabic when arrested but this was a hate crime not terrorism, Mr Dyer believed. He was allowed to speak to his mother and told her not to worry about him because his "magic" is strong. Randalls, 34, had just started work as a customer-service representative and was doing a ride-along, something he was excited about, friend Eddie Valencia said. He told her he loved her, too.
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Muhammad had run afoul of Fresno police before.
At 10:43 a.m., Muhammad approached two men in a parked Pacific Gas and Electric Co. truck, Dyer said. The driver wasn't hit and sped toward the police department, but Randalls died.
He wrote that his "kill rate increases tremendously on the other side" and also posted about "white devils".
Witness Monique Skinner, who lives near Catholic Charities, said she saw one of the charity victims draw his last breath.
Meanwhile, faith leaders are planning a prayer walk and vigil at noon Thursday.
Muhammad had reportedly posted some anti-government comments on social before going on the rampage. "I don't know if the shooter said anything, but he shot my son again and my son fell to the ground and was gone".
"Kori Muhammad is a very calloused individual".
Muhammad's father, Vincent Taylor, told the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday that his son believed that he was part of an ongoing war between whites and blacks, and that "a battle was about to take place". "Not get rid of them as in kill them", his father said.
"On what appeared to be Muhammad's Facebook page, he repeatedly posted "#LetBlackPeopleGo" and encouraged "black warriors" to "mount up".
Dyer says Muhammad, who is black, noticed a white man in a utility truck and fired into it, killing Zackary Randalls. He also faces at least two additional charges of assault with a deadly weapon.
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