Half Moon Bay shooting - live: Suspect Chunli Zhao who killed 7 at California mushroom farm bought gun legally

A mushroom farm worker has been arrested for killing seven coworkers in a mass shooting in Half Moon Bay – marking the second of three California mass shootings in three days.

Chunli Zhao, 67, worked for decades at one of the two agricultural business sites where the shooting unfolded on Monday afternoon.

He was arrested soon after when he was spotted sitting in his car outside a local sheriff’s office. Video showed officers wrestling him to the ground and placing him in handcuffs.

The alleged gunman shot dead four victims and wounded a fifth at the Mountain Mushroom Farm, and fatally shot another three victims at the Rice Trucking-Soil Farm located around two miles away, according to authorities. The eighth victim was airlifted to hospital and is now in a stable condition.

The horror attack is believed to have been witnessed by many children, as many farm workers live on-site with their families.

Police said on Tuesday that Zhao obtained the gun legally and characterised the incident as a “workplace violence incident”.

The arraignment is expected tomorrow in San Mateo County.

Key Points

  • What we know about the Half Moon Bay shootings

  • Who is suspect Chunli Zhao?

  • Suspect’s arrest captured on video hours after shootings

  • Two of seven victims identified

Firearm at Half Moon Bay was legally obtained

17:26 , Oliver O'Connell

Authorities in Half Moon Bay are giving an update on developments in the case.

They confirmed that the suspect was an employee of Mountain Mushroom Farm and that he obtained the semiautomatic handgun he used legally.

His arraignment is tomorrow in San Mateo County.

A victim who was hospitalised after the shooting is out of surgery and in a stable condition.

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Recap: What we know about the Half Moon Bay shootings

17:00 , Oliver O'Connell

California has now been left reeling from three mass shootings in as many days, after a “disgruntled” mushroom farm worker allegedly shot dead seven coworkers in a massacre in Half Moon Bay.

Chunli Zhao, who worked for decades at one of the two sites where the shooting unfolded, is accused of carrying out two separate shootings at two different agricultural businesses in the San Francisco area.

The suspect, 67, was arrested on Monday afternoon after he was spotted sitting in his car outside a local sheriff’s office.

Investigators are still trying to determine a motive for the horror attack which has reignited calls for a crackdown on gun laws in the US where mass shootings and gun violence are increasingly commonplace.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp explains what we know so far about the shooting:

Everything we know about Half Moon Bay mass shooting that left seven dead

California rocked by third mass shooting in three days as one killed and seven injured in Oakland

16:30 , Megan Sheets

California was rocked by its third mass shooting in as many days on Monday evening as one victim was killed and seven others injured in a shooting rampage at a gas station in Oakland.

The shooting unfolded just after 6pm at a gas station along Seminary Avenue and Macarthur Blvd, according to the Oakland Police Department (OPD).

Law enforcement responded to the scene after being notified to a shooting through ShotSpotter activity.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp has more:

California rocked by third mass shooting in days as 1 killed, 7 injured in Oakland

Possible motive emerges in Monterey Park shooting

16:10 , Megan Sheets

As many details remain unclear in the Half Moon Bay shooting, more information continues to emerge about the earlier attack in Monterey Park.

Officials say the suspect in that shooting, 72-year-old Huu Can Tran, had told the police earlier this month that his family had tried to poison him decades ago.

Hemet police spokesperson Alan Reyes said in a statement on Monday that Tran visited the Hemet Police Department lobby twice this month – on 7 January and then again on 9 January.

Tran had also made allegations of fraud and theft, apart from claiming that his family in the Los Angeles area had tried to poison him some 10-20 years ago.

The Independent’s Maroosha Muzaffar has more details:

Monterey Park killer thought his family tried to poison him decades ago

Children of farm worker victims witnessed shootings

15:50 , Megan Sheets

Children were present at the time seven people were killed across two farms in Half Moon Bay, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said.

The victims killed are believed to be workers at the properties, Mountain Mushroom Farm and Concord Farms, which are roughly two miles apart.

Ms Corpus said children did witness at least one of the shootings as workers live on both farms with their families.

Suspect Chunli Zhao is believed to be a worker at one of the farms.

Concord Farms issued a statement saying the suspect was unknown to the business, suggesting he worked at Mountain Mushroom Farm.

Two of seven victims identified

15:36 , Megan Sheets

The San Mateo County coroner has identified two of the seven victims killed at Half Moon Bay farms.

The coroner’s office did not release the names of those two victims as it is still working to notify their families.

“When notifications to the next of kin have been made, we can release some info,” coroner Robert J Foucrault said in a text message to the Los Angeles Times.

Half Moon Bay Mayor Deborah Penrose also offered scant detail about the victims in an interview with CNN on Tuesday morning.

“Only thing we do know is that some of the victims were Chinese, that the perpetrator was Chinese, and that this was an agricultural community,” Ms Penrose said. “They were agricultural workers.”

Suspect Chunli Zhao was unknown to one business where shooting occurred

15:21 , Megan Sheets

The principal of Concord Farms, which runs a location where one of the shootings took place, has suggested the company was unfamiliar with alleged gunman Chunli Zhao.

“We thank law enforcement for their swift response and actions. Concord Farms is a family owned and operated mushroom farm at this location for 37 years,” principal Aaron Tung said in a statement, according to ABC News.

“With no past knowledge with this gunman or his motives, we are shook and very eager to gain more information from the authorities and their investigations. Our hearts are with the victims, their families and the Chinese American community—from Half Moon Bay to Monterey Park.”

Three victims were found dead at Concord Farms, while another four were killed and fifth was wounded at the nearby Mountain Mushroom Farm.

Investigators are still working to determine which shooting took place first.

Joe and Jill Biden release statement on Half Moon Bay shooting

15:05 , Megan Sheets

President Joe Biden and his wife Jill reacted to the Half Moon Bay shooting in a statement released by the White House on Tuesday morning:

“Jill and I are praying for those killed and injured in the latest tragic shooting in Half Moon Bay, California. For the second time in recent days, California communities are mourning the loss of loved ones in a senseless act of gun violence.

“Following a briefing from my homeland security team, I have directed my administration to ensure local authorities and the broader Half Moon Bay community have the full support of the federal government in the wake of this heinous attack.

“Yesterday, Senator Feinstein — alongside Senators Murphy, Blumenthal and others — reintroduced a federal Assault Weapons Ban and legislation that would raise the minimum purchase age for assault weapons to 21. Even as we await further details on these shootings, we know the scourge of gun violence across America requires stronger action. I once again urge both chambers of Congress to act quickly and deliver this Assault Weapons Ban to my desk, and take action to keep American communities, schools, workplaces, and homes safe.”

Follow live updates on the Monterey Park shooting

14:50 , Megan Sheets

The Independent is also running live coverage of the Monterey Park shooting that left 11 dead and nine others injured on Saturday night.

Details continue to emerge about the victims, as well as the alleged gunman’s possible motive.

Follow along here:

Monterey Park gunman’s ‘poison’ paranoia revealed as 7 killed in Half Moon Bay – live

Newsom slams ‘tragedy upon tragedy’ as he learns about latest mass shooting while visiting Monterey Park victims

14:35 , Megan Sheets

California Governor Gavin Newsom was in Monterey Park meeting with victims of Saturday’s mass shooting on Monday when he learned about the shooting at Half Moon Bay.

“At the hospital meeting with victims of a mass shooting when I get pulled away to be briefed about another shooting. This time in Half Moon Bay. Tragedy upon tragedy,” he tweeted.

In an interview with CBS, the governor described the Second Amendment as a “suicide pact” and said that “large capacity magazines do not belong on our streets”.

“This Second Amendment’s becoming a suicide pact, it feels like,” he said.

“California’s 37 per cent lower than the death rate of the rest of the nation, and yet, with all that evidence, no one on the other side seems to give a damn.”

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California sees three mass shootings in three days

14:20 , Megan Sheets

Monday’s tragedy in Half Moon Bay marked the second of three mass shootings to rock California in as many days.

Eleven dead in Monterey Park

The first shooting unfolded in Monterey Park, outside Los Angeles, on Saturday night following Lunar New Year celebrations.

Eleven people were killed after alleged gunman Huu Can Tran entered the Star Ballroom Dance Studio and opened fire.

Tran then drove to a second dance studio – Lai Lai Ballroom in nearby Alhambra – where a hero worker managed to wrestle a gun away from him.

The gunman then fled the scene and no one was injured in the second incident.

A huge manhunt was launched to track down the gunman, culminating around 12 hours later with a police standoff in Torrance, about 30 miles from Monterey Park.

Tran died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound in his white van.

The motive for that attack remains unclear but it has emerged that Tran was paranoid that his family had tried to poison him decades ago and that had gone to police with the allegations just weeks before he going on the shooting rampage.

One dead, seven injured in Oakland

A teenager was killed and seven other victims injured in a shooting rampage at a gas station in Oakland on Monday evening.

The shooting unfolded just after 6pm at a Valera gas station along Seminary Avenue and Macarthur Blvd, according to the Oakland Police Department (OPD).

Law enforcement responded to the scene after being alerted to a shooting through ShotSpotter activity.

When officers arrived on the scene, there were no victims in sight – but shell casings left behind indicated what had unfolded.

Multiple victims suffering gunshot wounds had already self-transported to several area hospitals, OPD said.

One victim – identified by his family as 18-year-old Mario Navarro – was killed.

The other seven were in stable condition and are expected to survive.

Police have not confirmed what may have led up to the shooting but said that the investigation so far shows that several people may have exchanged gunfire.

Arrest captured on video

14:05 , Megan Sheets

San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus said in a press conference that Chunli Zhao, who had worked at the mushroom farm for decades, was found around two hours after the shootings sitting in his car in the parking lot of a sheriff’s substation.

Dramatic footage shows the suspect being wrestled to the ground as armed officers took him into custody.

The video, captured by Half Moon Bay resident Kati McHugh, shows three officers approaching a parked car with drawn weapons. The suspect then gets out of the car as officers pull him to the ground, handcuff and lead him away.

A semi-automatic handgun believed to have been used in the mass shooting was found inside his car, officials said.

The sheriff said that they are working on the belief that the suspect had gone to the police station to turn himself in, though this is yet to be confirmed. Mr Zhao is said to be fully cooperating with law enforcement.

Who is suspect Chunli Zhao?

13:50 , Megan Sheets

Little is yet known about suspected gunman Chunli Zhao.

The 67-year-old had worked for decades as a farmer at one of the two sites where the shooting unfolded.

San Mateo County Board of Supervisors President Dave Pine told local outlet KRON4 that Mr Zhao was a “disgruntled worker” at the farm but gave no further details.

The sheriff described the shooting as “horrific”, saying: “It’s a tragedy that we hear about far too often but today has hit home here in San Mateo County.”

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp reports:

Who is Chunli Zhao? Everything we know about the Half Moon Bay shooting suspect

What we know about the Half Moon Bay shootings

13:33 , Megan Sheets

California has now been left reeling from three mass shootings in as many days, after a “disgruntled” mushroom farm worker allegedly shot dead seven coworkers in a massacre in Half Moon Bay.

Chunli Zhao, who worked for decades at one of the two sites where the shooting unfolded, is accused of carrying out two separate shootings at two different agricultural businesses in the San Francisco area.

The suspect, 67, was arrested on Monday afternoon after he was spotted sitting in his car outside a local sheriff’s office.

Investigators are still trying to determine a motive for the horror attack which has reignited calls for a crackdown on gun laws in the US where mass shootings and gun violence are increasingly commonplace.

The Independent’s Rachel Sharp explains what we know so far about the shooting:

Everything we know about Half Moon Bay mass shooting that left seven dead