GUNMAN Patrick Crusius, who single-handily slaughtered 23 people inside an El Paso Walmart in 2019, has pleaded guilty to federal charges.
In one of the deadliest mass shootings in US history, Crusius stormed into the Cielo Vista-area Walmart on August 3, 2019, armed with an AK-47 assault rifle and systematically massacred nearly two dozen people.
5El Paso Walmart mass shooter Patrick Crusius has pleaded guilty to federal chargesCredit: Reuters5The deadly mass shooting left 23 people deadCredit: AFP5Authorities said Crusius drove over 600 miles to El Paso to carry out his planCredit: AFP or licensorsThe mass murderer, wearing a blue prison jumpsuit, appeared at the Albert Armendariz Sr. Federal Courthouse in Downtown El Paso on Wednesday, where he pleaded guilty to 90 federal charges.
The courtroom was crowded with family members who died in the shooting.
Crusius, who wore a face covering, was handcuffed from the front and had a metal chain tied around his waist, according to the El Paso Times.
Racism and claims of a “Hispanic invasion of Texas” fueled Crusius, 24, to carry out the deadly attack, the suspect wrote in a 2,300-word manifesto titled: “The Inconvenient Truth.”
On August 3, 2019, Crusius, from Allen, Texas, drove over 600 miles from the Dallas suburb to El Paso – a predominantly Latino city that neighbors the US-Mexico border.
Once in El Paso, Crusius – armed with an AK-47 assault rifle and hundreds of rounds of ammunition – uploaded a racist rant online stating: “This attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas,” court records revealed.
“I am simply defending my country from cultural and ethnic replacement brought on by an invasion,” the deranged gunman added.
Authorities said once at the Walmart, Crusius began opening fire at people in the parking lot and continued the onslaught inside the store.
The suspect surrendered to police after the attack, saying: “I’m the shooter.”
Crusius was hit with 90 federal charges, including a string of hate crimes.
A majority of the 23 victims and dozens of wounded were of Mexican descent or Mexican citizens, while 25 others were injured.
The slain included a 15-year-old soccer player and a 60-year-old Army veteran who would give “a meal and a home to anyone,” loved ones said.
The US Attorney’s Office will not seek the death penalty, however, the El Paso County District Attorney’s Office will.
Witness Adria Gonzalez – who was present in the Walmart on the day of the bloody massacre – told local NBC affiliate KTSM that she heard the gunman hurl slurs against Mexicans as she helped panicked shoppers toward the store exits.
She expressed her anger at federal prosecutors for their decision not to seek the death penalty, “It’s a slap in the face for us Latinos,” Gonzalez told the outlet.
Crusius has pleaded not guilty to a state capital murder charge.
It remains unclear when Crusius may face trial on separate state charges in Texas.
5The attack left 25 others injuredCredit: Reuters5Patrick Crusius voluntarily surrendered to police after the attack, telling them: ‘I’m the shooter’Credit: AP
Story Credit: thesun.co.uk