March 17 (UPI) — A suspect is in custody after at least eight people were killed and two more were injured in a series of shootings Tuesday at three massage parlors in the Atlanta area that may or may not be connected, police said.
The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said that Robert Aaron Long, 21, of Woodstock, Ga., was identified as the suspect in a shooting at Young’s Asian Massage Parlor near Acworth, where four people were killed and one was injured, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported.
Long was captured in Crisp County, about 150 miles south of Atlanta, after he was seen on surveillance footage wearing a red and black hoodie and driving a black Hyundai SUV.
The shooting took place at around 5 p.m., with two people declared dead at the scene and two more dying after being hospitalized for injuries.
Less than two hours later, four more people were killed in shootings at two separate massage parlors located near one another on Piedmont Road.
Capt. Jay Baker of the Cherokee sheriff’s office said that “it does appear it’s the same suspect” in all three shootings.
Atlanta police said the four victims on Piedmont Road appeared to be Asian women, and all three spas are primarily staffed by Asians.
They did not state whether the victims were employees or customers at the spas.
Cherokee County Sheriff’s representative Howard Baker told CNN that deputies were called to Young’s Asian Massage for reports of a shooting on Tuesday afternoon.
Less than an hour later, Atlanta police said they responded to a robbery call at the Gold Massage Spa on Piedmont Road and around the same time responded to a call at Aroma Therapy spa across the street.
The surrounding roads were shut down and the shopping center that housed two of the spas was closed to the public as investigators searched for evidence.