Accused Atlanta spa shooter facing ‘malice murder’ charges

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The charges facing accused Atlanta spa gunman Robert Aaron Long now include “malice murder” — a Georgia rap that alleges express or implied malice against the victims, according to a report.

Mourners pay their respects at the scene of two of the massage parlor shootings in Atlanta, Georgia.
Mourners pay their respects at the scene of two of the massage parlor shootings in Atlanta, Georgia.
EPA/ERIK S. LESSER

Long – who has allegedly admitted to shooting up three massage parlors, killing eight people, including six Asian women – could face additional charges, the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said Monday.

Robert Aaron Long is accused of killing six people.
Robert Aaron Long is accused of killing eight people.
Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office

He also faces aggravated assault charges.

Sheriff Frank Reynolds said that despite interest “across the country and around the world” in the case, his department would not comment further on the probe.

“Our main focus is investigating this heinous crime and ensuring all facts and evidence are gathered to present to the District Attorney of the Blue Ridge Judicial Circuit for prosecution,” Reynolds said in a statement.

People bring flowers to the memorial sight set up outside of The Gold Spa on March 19, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.
People bring flowers to the memorial sight set up outside of The Gold Spa on March 19, 2021 in Atlanta, Georgia.
Megan Varner/Getty Images

Authorities have said they are still trying to determine a motive for the shooting, which has heightened fears among Asian Americans already rattled by a rise in hate crimes directed at the community.  

Long allegedly blamed the rampage on his “sex addiction,” claiming he was trying to get rid of sources of temptation, authorities have said.

FBI Director Robert Wray has told NPR that race did not appear to be a factor.

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