Federal authorities are investigating a possible hate crime that happened on Wednesday as an engineer from India was killed and 2 others sustained gunshot wounds when a white US Navy veteran opened fire in a Kansas bar.
The home country of the individual who was killed is still in shock for their loss and according to citizens, changing in the policies by U.S. President Donald Trump is the reason of intolerance. People are now facing issues due to the new president’s policy “America First” position on immigration and jobs.
“Any loss of life was tragic, but it would be absurd to link the killing to Trump’s rhetoric,” said White House spokesman, Sean Spicer.
On Thursday, 51-year-old Adam Purinton was charged with:
It is said that if convicted of state murder charges, Purinton will have to spend his whole life in prison.
District Attorney Stephen Howe didn’t tell the reason behind the shooting and further details of the incident were not made public.
According to the local media, Purinton often complained about his ill health and was mourning the death of his father.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is making efforts to know whether it was a hate crime or if there is another reason behind the shooting.
Spokesman for the Indian embassy in Washington, Pratik Mathur, said India had expressed “our deep concern over the incident” and request thorough and speedy investigation.”
Purinton killed 32-year-old Srinivas Kuchibhotla and injured 32-year-old Alok Madasani. 24-year-old American Ian Grillot was also injured in the shooting incident as he attempted to stop him from shooting. He sustained a gunshot wound on his hand and chest.
One of the individuals present on the incident spot who saw the shooting live told that Purinton shouted “get out of my country” prior to shooting.
In the year 2014, Kuchibhotla joined the Kansas office of Switzerland-based navigation device maker Garmin Ltd from Rockwell Collins Inc.
After shooting, Purinton escaped the incident spot on foot and was taken into custody five hours after the shooting at an Applebee’s restaurant in Clinton, Missouri. According to a report, he asked an individual working at the restaurant to show him a place to hide because he killed 2 Middle Eastern men.
Grillot said in a video which was recorded in the hospital during his treatment, “People call me a hero; I was just doing what anyone should have done for any other human being.”
Kuchibhotla’s wife, Sunayana Dumala, told reporters that the gunman “has taken a life, a very lovable soul, from everyone.”
On Friday, flags at Garmin’s offices flew at half-staff and according to the company, it was “devastated by the senseless tragedy.” A large number of individuals attended a candle-light vigil on Friday evening.
A huge amount of money has been collected through crowd funding sites for the three victims as the money will be used for their treatment.
On Friday, a former Federal Aviation Administration employee, Purinton, was sent back to Kansas and he was being held with a bond set at $2 million.
He is summoned to court on Monday and it is unclear whether he has hired an attorney to represent him.
In a statement, Purinton’s niece named Adele Mathews said, “I don’t want people to think of him as a monster or a racist man because that’s not who he is.”
The history of Purinton was not checked by the police, so it is not confirmed whether Purinton has faced charges in the past.
According to Sergeant Logan Bonney, Purinton was not generally known to police in Olathe, a city where 134,000 individuals live.