Attack in Florida
Three Black shoppers were killed in a Jacksonville, Florida, Dollar General store Saturday after a shooter equipped with body armor and armed with at least a high-powered rifle and a handgun opened fire at the store. The shooter, who was white, fatally shot himself at the scene as officers arrived.
Officials quickly described the attack as overtly racially motivated. Ryan Palmeter, 21, who lived in the neighboring county, reportedly sent messages to the media, authorities, and his family ahead of the attack. Officials also said they found hand-drawn swastikas on the weapons used in the attack.
According to police statements, Palmeter had been detained under the Baker Act in 2017—a state law allowing involuntary medical confinement for those at risk of self-harm or causing harm to others. Authorities said the weapons were legally purchased earlier this year.
The killings echoed recent racially motivated mass shootings, including last year's attack at a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, which left 10 people dead.