CONKLIN, N.Y. – Accused Buffalo mass shooter Payton Gendron planned his allegedly racially motivated attack down to the minute – or at times, even the second – ahead of Saturday’s massacre that left 10 people dead and 3 others injured, according to local reports and the suspect’s alleged manifesto.
Gendron, 18, appeared to have planned to unleash his horrific attack at a Tops Friendly Markets on Jefferson Avenue around 4 p.m. Friday – which he said he had determined was the busiest time of day, according to his 180-page manifesto. It’s unclear, then, why he instead allegedly did so on Saturday afternoon.
In the days since Saturday’s events, high-ranking law enforcement officials, including FBI Director Christopher Wray and U.S. Attorney General Merrick B. Garland, have undisputedly called the tragedy “a hate crime and an act of racially-motivated violent extremism.”
According to multiple reports and the manifesto itself, Gendron allegedly planned to have corn beef hash for breakfast and leave his home around 7:30 a.m. in normal clothes.
He planned to arrive at the Tops location around noon and case the inside of the store to “make sure everything is as expected.”
He planned to eat food at McDonald’s and then, around 3:30 p.m., to change into his military-style attire. He allegedly designated a parking space on Sherman Street where he planned to do so.
Gendron then allegedly planned to publish his writings regarding the attack 10 minutes before he planned to go inside around 4 p.m. He planned to start a livestream around 3:55 p.m., and then turn into the store parking lot at 3:58 p.m., the manifesto states.
He allegedly planned where he would stop his vehicle in front of the store when he pulled up around approximately 4 p.m., and estimated it would take him “between 2-3 seconds” to “kick open the door and jump out of my car.”
Gendron also drew a diagram of the store, which he allegedly included in the manifesto, and outlined in horrifying detail his plans to launch his attack.
He allegedly estimated he would leave the store around 4:04 p.m. and then continue his attack by opening fire on people on the streets and nearby.
Gendron planned that he would either surrender to police or continue his attack if he were to find another location, the manifesto states.
Speaking to law enforcement and private community members during a Monday afternoon partner call, FBI Buffalo Special Agent-in-Charge Stephen Belongia said the investigation to confirm “with certainty” that the document “belongs to or was created by the alleged killer” was ongoing.