Wednesday, February 8, 2023

El Paso shooter pleads guilty to federal charges, "invasion rhetoric" used by shooter continues in immigration debate

report that a Texas man pleaded guilty today to federal charges accusing him of killing nearly two dozen people in a racist attack at an El Paso Walmart.  The U.S. government agreed that it would not seek the death penalty for the hate crimes and firearms violations.

Patrick Crusius still faces a potential death sentence if he’s convicted on a state murder charge in the 2019 shooting that killed 23 people. He has pleaded not guilty in the state case.  The incident was were one of the deadliest mass shootings in U.S. history.

Crusius surrendered to police after the massacre and said

"that he was targeting Mexicans . . . . Prosecutors have said he drove more than 10 hours from his hometown near Dallas to the largely-Latino border city and published a document online shortly before the shooting that said it was `in response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.'

His alleged statements echoed both the anti-immigration rhetoric of American politics and racist screeds put out by other mass shooters in the U.S. and abroad.

More than three years after the shooting, the description of an `invasion' on the U.S.-Mexico border by Republicans has continued in American politics, angering Democrats and immigrants rights groups.

From campaign stumps to hearings in Congress, Republicans have increasingly described high numbers of migrant crossings into the U.S. as an invasion threatening public safety and overwhelming border communities. Critics have condemned the characterization as anti-immigrant and dangerous in the aftermath of El Paso and other racially motivated attacks."


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