BUFALA, NY – A white man accused of killing 10 black people in a Buffalo supermarket was due to appear in court on Thursday as authorities, including the FBI, continue to investigate hate crimes and terrorism charges.
18-year-old Peyton Hendron conducted a live broadcast of the attack from a helmet camera before surrendering to police near a grocery store. Shortly before last Saturday’s attack, he posted hundreds of pages of articles in online discussion groups detailing his plans for the attack and racist motivations.
Investigators are studying these documents, including a personal diary he kept on the Discord chat platform.
During his initial appearance in court last week, court-appointed lawyer Hendron pleaded not guilty on his behalf.
The massacre at the Tops supermarket has caused alarm even in a country that has been numb from mass shootings. All but two of the 13 people shot during the attack were black. Hendron’s online writings say he planned the attack after he became fascinated with the ideology of white supremacy he encountered online.
The diary said Hendron planned his attack secretly, without assistance, but Discord confirmed on Wednesday that an invitation to access his private writings had been sent to a small group of people about 30 minutes before the attack.
Some of them accepted the invitation. It was unclear how many people read what he wrote or logged in to watch the attack live. It was also unclear whether anyone was trying to warn law enforcement.
Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia said investigators are working to obtain, verify and verify Hendron’s messages online.
New York Gov. Katie Hochul on Wednesday authorized Attorney General Leticia James to investigate social media platforms that Gendron uses to determine if they are responsible for “providing a platform for planning and promoting violence.”
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