FRESNO, Calif. – Three people are dead in a shooting spree in downtown Fresno on Tuesday, and the suspect was wanted in connection to the Motel 6 killing last week, the Fresno Police Department said.
Kori Ali Muhammad, 39, shouted “Allahu Akbar” as police tackled him to the ground after the shootings which were spread over four locations, Police Chief Jerry Dyer said.
The victims appeared to be random, Dyer said.
“These individuals that were chosen today did not anything to deserve what they got,” Dyer said. “These were unprovoked attacks.”
Shot Spotter detected the first gunshots around 10:45 a.m. Muhammad shot into a Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) vehicle killing the passenger. The driver sped away and drove to Fresno Police headquarters.
The chief said Muhammad was armed with a 357 revolver when he opened fire on his first victim, who was sitting inside the PG&E vehicle.
Muhammad continued walking and opened fire at a resident but missed. Shortly after, he encountered another resident and shot and killed that person, police said.
He then continued to the area of Catholic Charities where he shot and killed a person in the parking lot, police said. Shortly after, he was apprehended without police firing a shot.
“All sixteen of these rounds were fired in less than a minute within four different locations,” Dyer said.
Officers responded within one minute of the first shots.
Muhammad used a social media account — in part — to perpetuate an anti-white agenda.
Dyer said the men who were killed are believed to have had no connection to Muhammad. Dyer also said it was too early to tell whether terrorism was a factor.
Last week, a security guard at Motel 6 on Blackstone Avenue was shot and killed. Police later identified Muhammad as the suspect in that case.
Dyer said Muhammad is being charged with four counts of murder.
The LA Times goes to great lengths to disassociate the killings with Islam, via Man kills 3 people in shootings in downtown Fresno; police say terrorism unlikely (but that’s not at all what the police said according to the LAT own report below)
Both local authorities and the FBI are now investigating whether Muhammad’s actions amounted to a hate crimes. Dyer said police don’t believe it was an act of terrorism.
“Too early to say whether or not this involves terrorism,” Dyer said. “Certainly by the statement that was made, it could give that indication.”
A Facebook profile page for a Kori Ali Muhammad from Fresno paid homage to black pride and black nationalism, with images of the red, green and black Pan-African flag and a raised fist.
The rambling profile includes militant and apocalyptic language and repeated demands to “let black people go.” He referenced “white devils” and praised melanoma skin cancer.
On Saturday afternoon, Muhammad posted a photo of himself in a colorful garment, with his head covered, and the words: “LET BLACK PEOPLE GO OR THE DOOM INCREASES REPARATIONS & SEPARATION NOW.”
He wrote in all caps Monday: “MY KILL RATE INCRESASES TREMENDOUSLY ON THE OTHER SIDE ASÈ ALLAH U AKBAR.”
Brian Levin, director of Cal State San Bernardino’s Center for the Study of Hate and Extremism, said many of Muhammad’s social media postings make reference to terms used by the Nation of Islam, which has been labeled a racist hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center. Pointing to Muhammad’s repeated references to “white devils” and “Yakub” — the villainous figure responsible for creating white people according to Nation of Islam lore — Levin said it is likely Muhammad thought he was taking part in a race war against whites.
“We’re living in an era of violent reciprocal prejudice, and there are references on his website to Fard Muhammad, the founder of Nation of Islam, and Nation of Islam uses the term white devils quite prolifically, as did this shooter,” Levin said.
Muhammad legally changed his name from Kori Taylor when he was a teenager, according to his grandmother, Glenestene Taylor…
The LA Crimes isn’t the only “news” outlet slyly protecting Islam – including the widely circulated dreadlocked, headphone-wearing photo of Muhammad rather than the photo of him being arrested.
PS: It wouldn’t be the first Muslim mass shooter in California that the media glossed over: