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Shooter kills 7 farm workers in California

A gunman killed seven people at two farm businesses in Northern California, plunging the state back into mourning after its third mass murder in eight days.


Officials arrested a suspect in Monday's shootings, Chunli Zhao, 67, after he was found in his car in the parking lot of a sheriff's substation, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said.


Seven people were found dead and an eighth injured at a farm and another location several miles away, the Sheriff's Office said. Authorities believe Zhao worked at one of the facilities and that the victims were also workers, Corpus said. Authorities have not determined a motive for the shooting.


California is still recovering from an attack at a Lunar New Year celebration in Monterey Park that killed 11 and cast a shadow over a holiday important to many Asian-American communities. Authorities are still searching for a motive for Saturday's shooting.


The new year has brought a shocking string of mass killings in the U.S.: six in less than three weeks, amounting to 39 deaths. Three have occurred in California since Jan. 16, according to a database compiled by The Associated Press, USA Today and Northeastern University.


The killings occurred outside Half Moon Bay, a city about 30 miles (48 kilometers) south of San Francisco.



We received a report of a shooting with multiple victims. When officers arrived they located 4 victims, deceased, with gunshot wounds and a fifth victim, also shot and transported to the hospital, the suspect was not immediately located. Shortly thereafter an additional 3 victims were also found dead of gunshot wounds at a separate location. At 4:40pm the suspect was located in his vehicle in the parking lot of a Half Moon Bay Sheriff's Station and was taken into custody without incident and a semi-automatic weapon was located in his vehicle.

The sheriff added that the motives for the shooting are still unknown.

Half Moon Bay Deputy Mayor Joaquin Jimenez said the victims included Chinese and Latino farm workers. Some workers lived at one of the facilities and children witnessed the shooting, he said.



Our community is very affected, we continue to receive calls and messages from family members of the victims, we are here to support them, especially the children who were present when the shooting occurred and we hope that this tragedy will open our eyes to what is happening in our community with gun violence, let's think about this and how we are going to help the families affected.

The Sheriff's Office first received reports of a shooting in the afternoon and found four people dead and a fifth wounded at the first scene. Then, deputies found three more people shot dead nearby, Capt. Eamonn Allen said in a news release.


About two hours later, a sheriff's deputy spotted Zhao's car parked outside the sheriff's substation at a shopping center and arrested him.

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