72 hours in America: Three hate-filled crimes. Three hate-filled suspects.

72 hours in America: Three hate-filled crimes. Three hate-filled suspects.

By Ray Sanchez and Melissa Gray, CNN

Posted at 0515 GMT (1315 HKT) October 28, 2018

(CNN) — Consider the past week in America.
Wednesday, a white man with a history of violence shot and killed two African-Americans, seemingly at random, at a Kentucky Kroger store following a failed attempt to barge into a black church.
After mail bombs were being sent to people who’d been criticized by the President, a suspect was arrested Friday — a man who had railed against Democrats and minorities with hate-filled messages online.
And Saturday morning, a man shouting anti-Semitic slurs opened fire at a Pittsburgh synagogue, killing 11 people attending Jewish services.
Those three incidents in 72 hours shared one thing: hate.
“It’s a terrible, terrible thing what’s going on with hate in our country and frankly all over the world,” President Donald Trump told reporters Saturday before boarding Air Force One for a flight to a political rally in Indiana.

Death in the grocery store

He tried first to enter a church in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, just outside of Louisville. It was the predominantly black First Baptist Church, and Gregory Bush allegedly banged on the door and tried to pull it open, CNN affiliate WDRB reported.
FBI looking into Kentucky Kroger shooting
Bush, a 51-year-old white man, didn’t manage to get inside. The doors were locked.
Bush then headed to a Kroger store, where he allegedly shot two people, both African-American. The first victim was Maurice Stallard, 69, who was with his 12-year-old grandson buying a poster board for a school project. The second was Vickie Jones, 67, killed in the parking lot as Bush fled.
Members of the Louisville Metro Police Department talk inside the Kroger grocery store in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, after Wednesday's shootings.
Members of the Louisville Metro Police Department talk inside the Kroger grocery store in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, after Wednesday’s shootings.
“I’m just sick and heartbroken and quite angry. I feel that way about any act of violence and cruelty,” said Louisville Mayor Greg Fischer.
Bush has a history of mental illness, made racist threats and repeatedly called his ex-wife the N-word, according to court records, WDRB reported. He has a lengthy criminal record that includes domestic violence, the station reported.
Jeffersontown Mayor Bill Dieruf said it shook the community, which values its sense of family.
A Kroger employee wipes away tears following Wednesday's shooting in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, that left two people dead.
A Kroger employee wipes away tears following Wednesday’s shooting in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, that left two people dead.
“We are kindred spirits no matter our walk of life or how we worship or what we look like. We take pride in that,” he said.
Bush is in custody and faces potential civil rights violations, such as hate crimes, the US attorney for the Western District of Kentucky, Russell Coleman, said Friday.
“The murders are not being taken lightly by the United States government,” Coleman said.

Terror in the mail

When the Kentucky shooting happened, the nation was getting nervous about an increasing number of suspicious packages being sent through the mail.
The first one was discovered Mondayafternoon at the home of liberal campaign donor and billionaire George Soros. Wednesday morning, the Secret Service said two more had been found — one addressed to former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, and another to former President Barack Obama.
A member of the New York Police Department bomb squad is pictured outside the Time Warner Center in New York on Wednesday after a suspicious package was found inside.
A member of the New York Police Department bomb squad is pictured outside the Time Warner Center in New York on Wednesday after a suspicious package was found inside.
Four more would be found before the end of the day — including one sent to CNN’s New York bureau, prompting the evacuation of the entire building, Time Warner Center.
The package sent to CNN — the first of two — was addressed to former CIA Director John Brennan.
This is one of the suspicious packages sent to the CNN building in New York.
This is one of the suspicious packages sent to the CNN building in New York.
On Friday came word of more packages, and then an arrest — a 56-year-old Florida man named Cesar Sayoc. Federal authorities said he mailed a total of 14 packages containing pipe bombs, none of which detonated, but all of which were real.
Sayoc’s political inclinations were passionately displayed for everyone to see. His white Dodge van was plastered with pro-Trump messages and stickers showing prominent liberals in crosshairs. A sticker reading “CNN Sucks” was also on the van.
Continued in the  next story
A former boss said Sayoc called himself a white supremacist. Online, with two accounts on Facebook and three on Twitter, Sayoc often posted provocative photos and memes attacking liberals, along with conspiracy theories.
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Gladys Benson

Gladys Benson

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