Eight people were killed in a spa shooting in the Atlanta area

Officials said Wednesday that the gunman who opened fire at three Atlanta-area spas killed eight people, including six Asian women. However, local police said it was too early to deny the hate crime.

The shooting sent shockwaves through the Asian community across the country, which has seen an increase in racist violence and hate crimes during the coronavirus epidemic. Asian Americans reported about 3,800 unpleasant incidents last year, according to a new report.

The 21-year-old suspect was taken into custody and charged with eight counts of murder and one count of aggravated assault.

Police chased his man Tuesday and arrested him within hours of the shooting, thanks to information provided by his family. Police said he could plan more attacks in Florida.

Atlanta shooting
Mallory Rahman and her daughter Zara Rahman (,), who live nearby, bring flowers to the Gold Spa Massage Parlor in Atlanta on March 17, 2021.

Ben Gray / A.P.