A Cherokee County, Georgia, Sheriff’s Office spokesperson who said the 21-year-old white man accused of killing six Asian women and two others in shootings at spas in the Atlanta area had “a very bad day” previously shared a photo of racist T-shirts on social media.
“Yesterday was a really bad day for him and this is what he did,” Jay Baker said during the joint news conference with the Atlanta Police Department about 21-year-old Robert Aaron Long.
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In a Facebook post from April 2020, shared an image of T-shirts based off the Corona beer label that said “Covid 19 IMPORTED VIRUS FROM CHY-NA,” reports Buzzfeed News.
“Love my shirt,” Baker wrote in another post in April 2020. “Get yours while they last.’”
“The shirts appear to be printed by Deadline Appeal, owned by a former deputy sheriff from Cherokee County, and sold for $22,” the outlet reports. “The store, which promotes fully customizable gear, also appears to print shirts for the Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Honor Guard, a “ceremonial unit, all volunteers, who represent not only the Sheriff’s Office but also the county when participating in a variety of events,” according to a March 10 Instagram post. The photos on Baker’s account were first spotted by a Twitter user.”
When contacted by The Daily Beast, Sheriff Frank Reynolds, who appears to be friends with Baker on Facebook, said he was not aware of the racist photos.
“I am not aware of that. I will have to contact him but thank you for bringing that to my attention,” Reynolds said.
During a Wednesday news conference, Baker seemed to downplay Long’s actions in the deadly rampage, telling reporters the 21-year-old attributed the crimes to his “sexual addiction” issues.
Baker said Long targeted the spas to “take out that temptation.”