Capt. Jay Baker of Georgia’s Cherokee County Sheriff’s office has come under heavy fire on Wednesday after describing the “really bad day” suspected murderer Robert Aaron Long had following a mass-shooting spree that left eight people dead on Tuesday.
Speaking at a press conference about the mass shooting at three massage parlors outside Atlanta whose victims included six Asian women, Baker said Long had told investigators he targeted spas to “take out that temptation” from his “sexual addiction” issues.
But many online seized on Baker’s remark that “”Yesterday was a really bad day for him and this is what he did” — and suggested it was the latest case of law enforcement seeking to underplay crimes when the suspects are white.
“Yeah, that makes sense, because nobody else has really had a bad day in the last year or so. Christ on a crutch, what apologist bulls—,” tweeted John Rogers, writer of “Leverage” and “The Librarians.”
“This is what we are NOT going to do,” tweeted comedian and writer Jenny Yang. “We are not going to describe a killer going on a MURDER SPREE OF ASIAN WOMEN as “HAVING A BAD DAY FOR HIM.'”
“If this murderer were Muslim, Black, or basically anything other than white, there is no way killing innocent people would be characterized as ‘having a bad day,’ writer and author Jemele Hill added.
Baker claimed that Long “was pretty much fed up and at the end of his rope.” He also stopped short of confirming that Long’s attack was racially motivated given the victims he chose, instead citing an issue with sex addiction and the fact that Long frequented a spa and salon where the murders took place. “It’s a temptation for him that he wanted to eliminate,” Baker said.
Over the course of the past year, violence and harassment against Asian Americans has topped over 3,000 incidents.
Author Ayelet Waldman also objected to Baker’s commments. “”He was fed up, at the end of his rope,” Baker said. “He had a bad day, and this is what he did.” Atlanta Police Chief Baker. I mean, who among us can’t relate? I’ve had bad days and shot 8 people of color. Haven’t you?” she asked sarcastically.
See more reactions below.
"Yesterday was a really bad day for him."
It was a worse one for his victims and their families.
— Geraldine (@everywhereist) March 17, 2021
good lord, a "bad day" for him? https://t.co/mlmbTsyp3D
— Josh Marshall (@joshtpm) March 17, 2021
— kristen johnston (@thekjohnston) March 17, 2021
You don’t have a bad day and go fucking shoot people.
— Plastique Tiara (@plastiquetiara) March 17, 2021
this is what we are NOT going to do
— Jenny Yang (@jennyyangtv) March 17, 2021
The police and I have a different definition of what a "really bad day" is.
— Jae-Ha Kim 김재하 (@GoAwayWithJae) March 17, 2021
Yeah, that makes sense, because nobody else has really had a bad day in the last year or so. Christ on a crutch, what apologist bullshit.
— John Rogers (@jonrog1) March 17, 2021
I mean the UTTER FUCKING CAUCACITY to stand up there and say a guy who went on a shooting spree “had a bad day” like oh so sorry your fucking feels got hurt grow up and cope you murderous monster
— shauna (@goldengateblond) March 17, 2021
If this murderer were Muslim, Black, or basically anything other than white, there is no way killing innocent people would be characterized as “having a bad day.”
— Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) March 17, 2021
The Atlanta police chief doesn’t yet know if this was a hate crime. Says yesterday was a bad day for the shooter.
— Lauren Ashcraft ☀️ (@VoteAshcraft) March 17, 2021
White men murder, & an Atlanta police chief can put it down to a 'bad day'.There is something chillingly horrifying about white men's consistent ability to casually erase extraordinary violence as a somehow reasonable result & response of every day feeling. #BadDayBehavior
— Esther Armah (@estherarmah) March 17, 2021
The Atlanta police chief be like: pic.twitter.com/9oidtpKFEi
— Logan A. Heiman (@LoganAHeiman) March 17, 2021
A bad day for HIM. Smh https://t.co/XZOreqJDDR
— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) March 17, 2021