NEW YORK (PIX11) — New York is rallying behind the Buffalo community by providing support and resources to help it heal in the wake of the mass shooting at a supermarket over the weekend.
The state is supplying Buffalo with $3 million for relief efforts, such as mental health counseling and resources for the families of the victims, Gov. Kathy Hochul said Monday in an interview with PIX11.
Rev. Al Sharpton, the president of the National Action Network in Harlem, has also offered to pay for the funerals of all the victims, she said.
“Ther’s a lot of pain,” said Hochul, who is from Buffalo. “Our hearts are broken.”
A white gunman is accused of a racist massacre at a Buffalo supermarket on Saturday. The suspect allegedly shot and killed 10 people while specifically targeting Black people in his spree at the Tops Friendly Market. Three people were also injured.
Payton Gendron, 18, traveled about 200 miles from his home in Conklin, New York, to Buffalo to commit the attack, police said.
“It was a racially motivated hate crime,” Hochul said.
The suspect legally purchased an AR-15 rifle in New York, but the military-capacity magazine allegedly used was not legal in the state, the governor said. It’s possible the magazine was purchased in another state with more lenient laws, like Pennsylvania, the governor said.
“We need a national response because we can do what we can in New York, but if other states allow this… there is urgency here,” Hochul said about national gun laws.
Federal authorities were still working to confirm the authenticity of a racist 180-page document posted on the internet, purportedly written by Gendron, that said the assault was intended to terrorize all non-white, non-Christian people and get them to leave the country.
Hochul said authorities are still investigating when the document was posted and if it was flagged. The manifesto was a copy of the same document used to justify a mass shooting in New Zealand, the politician said.
Hochul said while there are federal laws that protect tech companies, they have a “moral responsibility and an ethical responsibility ” to oversee the information posted online.
“Internet is being hijacked by evil sources,” she said.
This story comprises reporting from The Associated Press.