FBI agents probe if retired agent had knowledge of alleged Buffalo shooter: report

Authorities are reportedly investigating whether a retired federal agent knew of a white supremacist’s plans to carry out his deadly attack on a Buffalo convenience store 30 minutes before the mad gunman went on a rampage.

Two law enforcement officials with knowledge of the investigation told The Buffalo News the Feds believe the former agent – believed to be from Texas – was among at least six people who regularly communicated online with suspected gunman Payton Gendron about his racist views.

The sources said Gendron also invited some online acquaintances to read about his hateful upcoming plan to attack the Tops Friendly Markets store where he allegedly killed 10 people and injured three others on May 14.

Eleven of those shots were black and two were white. One dead victim was a retired Buffalo police officer.

The Buffalo News said they could not determine if the retired agent accepted the invitation.

“These were like-minded people using this chat group to talk about their shared interests in racial hatred, replacement theory, and hatred of anyone who is Jewish, a person of color or non-European ancestry,” one of the officials told the news outlet .

“Particularly disturbing is that these six people were given advance notice of the shooting approximately 30 minutes before the shooting in Buffalo,” the source said.

Police officers secure the crime scene after a shooting at the TOPS supermarket in Buffalo, New York,
Police officers secure the crime scene after a shooting at the TOPS supermarket in Buffalo, New York,
REUTERS/Jeffrey T Barnes

“The FBI has confirmed that none of these people called the police to warn them about the shooting. The FBI database shows no advance tip from anyone that this shooting was imminent,” the official added.

The FBI is trying to locate the six people who could be charged as accomplices in the shooting, the sources told the newspaper.

John Elmore, a civil rights attorney representing the family of Andre Mackniel, 53, one of the dead victims, told Fox News that the retired agent “had a moral obligation to call and try to let someone know if he had any.” It had advance notice.”

Payton Gendron
The sources said Gendron invited some online acquaintances to read about his hateful upcoming plan to attack Tops Friendly Markets store.
BigDawg via REUTERS

It was previously reported that 15 people accepted Gendron’s invitation to a private chat room terrifyingly named “Happening: This is not a drill,” where he allegedly spent months meticulously planning his attack.

CNN has reported that he invited people to the Discord app 30 minutes before the massacre.

The chat room contained months of posts from an author posing as Gendron describing his twisted views and how he had scouted the Tops Friendly Markets in a mad scheme to kill as many black people as possible.

The Washington Post reported that 15 people had accepted the invitation, citing one person with knowledge of the messaging platform’s investigation.

Buffalo Sacrifice
10 people were killed in the shooting.

A copy of the invitation verified by the newspaper said accepted users were also able to watch a video stream of the shooting via a link to an account on Twitch, a video streaming service where Gendron allegedly broadcast a video of his attack.

A Discord representative told CNN, “What we currently know is that the suspect created a private invitation-only server to serve as a personal diary chat log.

“However, about 30 minutes before the attack, a small group of people were invited to the server and joined it. Before that, our records show that no other people saw the diary chat log on this private server,” the spokesperson added.

Gendron has pleaded not guilty in the fatal shooting, which he live-streamed on Twitch while wearing military-style tactical gear.

New York Attorney General Letitia James said her office will investigate Discord, Twitch, 4chan and other platforms the shooter “used to amplify the killing spree.”

https://nypost.com/2022/05/27/feds-probing-if-retired-agent-had-notice-of-alleged-buffalo-shooter-report/ FBI agents probe if retired agent had knowledge of alleged Buffalo shooter: report

JACLYN DIAZ

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