Buffalo shooter gets life sentence shortly after man charges at him

Dayton Gendron, 19, pleaded guilty to 25 counts, including first-degree murder and terrorism motivated by hate.

Ahead of the sentencing on Wednesday, a family member rushed towards the killer and was restrained by security.

Other relatives shared emotional impact statements.

Barbara Massey, whose sister Katherine was killed, said to the gunman: “You are going to come to our city and decide you don’t like black people. Man, you don’t know a damn thing about black people. We’re human.”

Ms Massey’s statement was interrupted by her own son lunging toward the gunman. She told reporters outside court “he saw me emotional and I’m his mom”.

“We’re close,” she said. “You hurt one of us, you hurt us all.”

Zaire Goodman, who was injured, suffers from survivor’s guilt, his mother told the courtroom.

“He is dealing with the pain that I as a mother cannot bear,” Zeneta Everhart said.

“On that day this terrorist made the choice that the value of a black human meant nothing to him… whatever the sentence is that [the gunman] receives, it will never be enough.”

Brian Talley lost family member Geraldine Talley in the shooting.

He said: “I forgive you, but I forgive you not for your sake, but for mine and for this black community.”

All of the 10 people killed were black. Three others were wounded.

Wayne Jones, the son of a victim, Celestine Chaney, addressed the killer: “You’ve been brainwashed. You don’t even know black people that much to hate them. You learned this on the internet.

“I hope you find it in your heart to apologize to these people, man. You did wrong for no reason.”

The killer wept as Tamika Harper shared memories of her murdered aunt, Geraldine Talley.

Ms. Harper told him: “Do I hate you? No. Do I want you to die? No. I want you to stay alive. I want you to think about this every day of your life.”

Investigators said the gunman researched the racial makeup of Buffalo, which was 200 miles (320km) away from his house in Conklin, New York, before his attack.

Wearing bullet-resistant armor, he live-streamed the 14 May attack at Tops Friendly Market after writing online about how he had been inspired by other racially motivated shootings.

But speaking to the court on Wednesday he warned against copycat shootings.

The gunman, who is not eligible for parole, said: “I shot and killed people because they were black. Looking back now, I can’t believe I actually did it.

“I believed what I read online and acted out of hate. I know I can’t take it back, but I wish I could, and I don’t want anyone to be inspired by me and what I did.”

As she delivered her decision, Judge Susan Eagan said: “There can be no mercy for you, no understanding, no second chances.”

New York state no longer allows the death penalty, but prosecutors at the federal level may seek it over hate and domestic terror charges to which the gunman has pleaded not guilty.

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