CAPAC Chair Welcomes Guilty Plea from Georgia Shooter

Jul 27, 2021 Issues: Other Issues

Washington, D.C. — On March 16, Robert Aaron Long walked into three different Asian-owned spas in the Atlanta area and opened fire. Eight lives, including those of six Asian American women, were lost that day. Today in Cherokee County, Mr. Long pled guilty to four of these murders, which comes with four life sentences without parole. Four more cases are outstanding in Atlanta, where Mr. Long has been charged with a hate crime. Congressional Asian Pacific American Caucus (CAPAC) Chair Rep. Judy Chu (CA-27) issued the following statement:
“I’m relieved for the families of the victims that they are receiving a small dose of justice today. And I’m grateful that Mr. Long’s guilty plea has spared them the prolonged pain of a trial. I hope that, with this clear admission of guilt and significant punishment, the families can begin to find peace and closure after this horrific event.

“However, I’m disappointed that prosecutors in Cherokee County claimed this crime was not motivated by hate. Having led a delegation to Georgia where we visited these spas, it was clear to me that Mr. Long could not have been more deliberate in seeking out Asian women to murder. I agree with Cherokee County Superior Court Chief Judge Ellen McElyea who said that the fact that people other than Asian women were harmed did not in any way negate that his intentions were to target and kill Asian women. I am encouraged that he still faces hate crimes charges in Atlanta, and I hope to see these charges resolved quickly as well so that the families can focus on their healing. Treating such blatant hate crimes as such is essential to demonstrate that our country is serious about standing up to the plague of anti-Asian violence that has endangered so many lives since the start of this pandemic.”