7 Dead and 1 Critically Injured in Half Moon Bay, California Mass Shooting (UPDATE)

Seven people were found dead at two nearby shooting scenes in Half Moon Bay, and an eighth was critically wounded. A 67-year-old suspect is now in custody.

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UPDATED 1/25, 12:15 p.m. ET:More information was made available on Tuesday regarding the tragedy in Half Moon Bay.

Per NBC News, San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus told media,“The only known connection between the victims and the suspect is that they may have been co-workers. All of the evidence we have points to this being [an] instance of workplace violence.”

The same article adds, “Sheriff’s investigators also said they’re struggling to notify loved ones of victims who were described as ‘members of the migrant community,’ who were of Asian and Hispanic descent.”

Suspect Chunli Zhao, 66, will be arraigned in court on Wednesday, where he faces seven counts of murder and one for attempted murder. The mass shooting was referred to as the worst in San Mateo County history by District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe.

KRON4 and the San Francisco Chronicle were among the outlets to uncover court records from 2013 revealing Zhao was accused of violent threats against a former boss/roommate.

Half Moon Bay mass shooting: I obtained a restraining order filed against Chunli Zhao a decade ago by his ex-boss. "Mr. Zhao attempted to suffocate me with his pillow ... threatening to kill me if I don’t get him his job back,” the ex-boss wrote.
Story: https://t.co/HPMxGTF1QE pic.twitter.com/vCedXbujGF

— Amy Larson (@AmyLarson25) January 24, 2023

The Half Moon Bay murders and Saturday’s shooting in Monterey Park, California claimed 18 lives and left 10 injured.

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Seven people were killed and one was critically wounded at two shooting scenes in Half Moon Bay, California.

A 66-year-old man named Chunli Zhao is in custody after being found inside his car in a sheriff’s office substation parking lot. “The weapon was located in his vehicle,” said San Mateo County Sheriff Christina Corpus at a press conference.

Authorities believes the Half Moon Bay resident acted alone, per ABC7 News.

Chunli Zhao's driver's license photo has been released by the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office. San Mateo County Sheriff says that Zhao is currently being interviewed by authorities. pic.twitter.com/hEizuizVzG

— Tori Gaines (@ToriDoesNewsNow) January 24, 2023

The victims—five men and two women—were reportedly found at Mountain Mushroom Farm and nearby Concord Farms. As the story continues to unfold, the locations have been referred to by NPR as landscaping nurseries, while Axios identifies them as “a mushroom farm and trucking firm.”

First responders were initially called about an active shooter at roughly 2:20 p.m. PT. The sheriff’s office tweeted at 3:48 p.m. that it was “responding to a shooting incident with multiple victims in the area of HWY 92 and the HMB City limits.” 

An hour later it posted, “Suspect is in custody. There is no ongoing threat to the community at this time.” 

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“The victims are Chinese farmworkers, Half Moon Bay Councilmember Debbie Ruddock said,” NBC Bay Area writes. The Daily Beast says the small coastal city located 30 or so miles south of San Francisco is populated by about 12,000 people, “most of them agricultural workers, artists, and Silicon Valley commuters.”

CBS Bay Area reports that an aerial view of Mountain Mushroom Farm “showed deputies and law enforcement personnel gathered outside one of many greenhouses at the site.”

Several outlets noted that children were present but unharmed.

On Monday night—just two days after a Monterey Park, California mass shooting claimed 11 lives—Gov. Gavin Newsom tweeted, “At the hospital meeting with victims of a mass shooting when I get pulled away to be briefed about another shooting. This time in Half Moon Bay. Tragedy upon tragedy.”

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre wrote on Twitter that President Biden “has been briefed by the Homeland Security Advisor on the mass shooting in San Mateo County” and directed “federal law enforcement to provide any necessary assistance to the local authorities.”

The FBI is now assisting.

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