Mass Shooting Threat Made Against Syracuse Area Tops Store
A 20 year old was arrested by the Town of Manlius Police after he allegedly made threats to commit a mass shooting at a Tops Friendly Market near Syracuse, New York.
According to a report by Douglass Dowty on Syracuse.com, 20-year-old Zachary Mullen of Jamesville, New York was arrested and charged with making a terroristic threat after allegedly posting the threats on Discord, a social media platform.
In one of the posts he reportedly broke down his plan and expectations, writing:
"Location: Tops, Manlius
Date: Next Week
Expected Kills: 1-2"
Concerned citizens called the Tops store to inform them of the threats. A judge signed an extreme risk protection order after Red Flag Laws were triggered, and authorities arrested Mullen and removed guns from his residence.
According to another report by Emma Misiaszek of WRGB, the man had apparently lost his father, and avid hunter, and was mourning. Authorities believe that Mullen had access to his father's hunting firearms.
He allegedly wrote on Discord "debating on weather to do a mass murder or becoming a legitimate racist and buying a KKK outfit One of them would be good."
Bill Fitzpatrick, Onondaga County District Attorney, told CNY Central "There were some racist overtones to the posts made by Mr. Mullen and as of this moment we're still trying to connect the dots as to why he picked the Tops in Manlius, but certainly the location of the store, the name of the store, the racist natures of the post, would cause anyone pause, that this may have been far more dastardly than it even looks on the surface."
In 2022, Conklin teen Payton Gendron committed a mass shooting at a Tops supermarket in Buffalo, New York, which left him potentially facing the death penalty on the federal charges. Gendron reportedly made similar comments in an online class as a high school student one year prior to the shooting. According to a report by WNBF's Bob Joseph, following that revelation Broome County District Attorney Michael Korchak said that the school district "followed the procedures and protocols that were in place at that time."
Gendron later legally purchased a Bushmaster XM-15 semiautomatic rifle from Vintage Firearms in Endicott. The store owner said he ran a background check before selling the weapon.
That Tops supermarket in Buffalo also later received racially motivated threats from 37-year-old Joey David George of Lynwood, Washington. He pleaded guilty to making interstate threats and committing a hate crime for interference with a federally protected activity.