Eight people, including many women of Asian origin, died in shootings in two massage parlors in Atlanta and one in the suburbs, the authorities said on Tuesday. A 21-year-old man was taken into custody hours later after a manhunt in southwest Georgia.
Atlanta police chief Rodney Bryant said three people were killed in a spa in northeast Atlanta while a fourth person was killed in another spa across the street. He said all four victims were female and “it appears they are Asians.”
Atlanta police officers who responded to a phone call for a robbery at a spa around 5:50 p.m. found three women dead from gunshot wounds, police said. While they were at this location, they learned of a phone call reporting shots fired at another spa across the street and found a woman who appeared to have been shot in the shop.
Earlier, around 5 p.m., five people were shot dead at Young’s Asian Massage Parlor in Acworth, about 50 kilometers north of Atlanta, said Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office spokesman Capt. Jay Baker. Two of the victims were dead and three were taken to hospital, where two of them also died, Baker said.
Authorities did not immediately disclose the sex or race of the victims, Baker said.
A man suspected in the Acworth shooting was caught on surveillance video that came to the store at around 4:50 p.m. on Tuesday, minutes before the shooting, authorities said. Baker said the Woodstock suspect Robert Aaron Long was detained in Crisp County, about 150 miles south of Atlanta.
Baker said they believe Long was also the suspect in the Atlanta shootings.
After two gunfights in Atlanta massage parlors and knowledge of the Acworth shooting, Atlanta police said they had dispatched officers to investigate similar businesses nearby and increased patrols in the area.