Effects of mass shooting in NY felt across the country including Hampton Roads

Buffalo Supermarket Shooting
Posted at 11:18 AM, May 16, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-16 18:01:06-04

HAMPTON ROADS, Va. – A somber start to the week after a mass shooting in Buffalo, New York over the weekend killed 10 people. Most of the victims were Black.

Police say that Payton Gendron, 18, traveled about 200 miles from his home in Conklin, New York, to Buffalo to commit the attack.

Federal authorities are still working to confirm the authenticity of a racist 180-page document, purportedly written by Gendron, that said the assault was intended to terrorize all non-white, non-Christian people and get them to leave the country.

Law enforcement officials revealed Sunday that New York State Police troopers had been called to Gendron's high school last June for a report that the then-17-year-old had made threatening statements.

Federal law bars people from owning guns if a judge has determined they have a “mental defect” or they have been forced into a mental institution - but an evaluation alone would not trigger the prohibition.

In Hampton Roads, exactly two weeks ago, the YWCA of South Hampton Roadswrapped up a challenge called Stand Against Racism Challenge. According to the YWCA, the local chapter and those across the country do this to raise awareness about the negative impact of institutional and structural racism in communities and seek to build community among those who work for racial justice.

This year’s 21-day challenge had the theme, “We Can’t Wait: Equity and Justice Now.”

Participants had the opportunity to learn and engage with articles, podcasts, and videos, to enhance their understanding of pressing issues impacting communities.

"We never know what’s going on in people’s minds, but this is a unique opportunity for us as a community of Hampton Roads to pause, to reflect, to sit in this for a moment, and then to figure out what is it that we need to be doing and focused on that we can heighten awareness about the inhumanity of racism and what it does," said Michelle Ellis Young, CEO of YWCA.

Monday morning on the Facebook page of YWCA of SHR, they posted a photo of the victims with the comment: "We pause to remember the victims, their families and the community of Buffalo in this senseless tragedy. And this is why we fight to dismantle racism every single day!"

YWCA of South Hampton Roads is organizing a conference to be held Wednesday, June 15 at Norfolk State University. It's a conference on R.E.S.T., Racial Equity and Social Transformation. The conference is intended to bring together Hampton Roads community members with the goal of advancing racial justice and equity in our region.

Click here to learn how to register.