Suspect in Half Moon Bay farm killings faces 7 murder counts | Region & More Trending News

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HALF MOON BAY, Calif. (AP) — A farmworker accused of killing seven folks in back-to-back shootings at two Northern California mushroom farms was charged Wednesday with seven counts of murder and one in all tried murder.

Chunli Zhao, 66, will make his first courtroom look Wednesday afternoon. It was not instantly clear whether or not he had an legal professional who may converse on his behalf.

Meanwhile, the San Mateo County coroner’s workplace recognized six of those that died in shootings the sheriff’s workplace has known as “workplace violence” with out additional detailing a motive. It was California’s third mass taking pictures in eight days, together with the killing of 11 in the Los Angeles space amid Lunar New Year celebrations Saturday.

Authorities imagine Zhao acted alone Monday when he entered a mushroom farm the place he labored in Half Moon Bay, shot and killed 4 folks and significantly wounded a fifth. He then drove to a close-by farm the place he labored beforehand and killed three extra folks, stated Eamonn Allen, a sheriff’s spokesperson.

The expenses embody extra allegations that might consequence in the dying penalty or life in jail with out parole, although Gov. Gavin Newsom has issued a moratorium on executions. Among these allegations are that Zhao used a gun, prompted nice bodily harm, killed a number of folks, and had a previous felony conviction. No extra particulars have been offered on the prior felony.

The coroner’s workplace named six of the victims: Zhishen Liu, 73, of San Francisco; Marciano Martinez Jimenez, 50, of Moss Beach, California; Aixiang Zhang, 74, of San Francisco; Qizhong Cheng, 66, of Half Moon Bay; Jingzhi Lu, 64, of Half Moon Bay; and Yetao Bing, 43, whose hometown was unknown. The title of the seventh sufferer has not been launched publicly as officers work to inform kinfolk, the coroner’s workplace stated.

Officials have stated a number of the folks killed have been migrant employees.

Servando Martinez Jimenez stated his brother Marciano Martinez Jimenez was a supply particular person and supervisor at one of many farms. He by no means talked about Zhao or stated something about issues with different employees.

“He was a good person. He was polite and friendly with everyone. He never had any problems with anyone. I don’t understand why all this happened,” Martinez Jimenez stated in Spanish.

Marciano Martinez Jimenez had lived in the United States for 28 years after arriving from the Mexican state of Oaxaca. Servando Martinez Jimenez stated he’s working with the Mexican consulate to get his brother’s physique house.

It wouldn’t have been Zhao’s first match of office rage, the San Francisco Chronicle reported. In 2013 Zhao was accused of threatening to separate a coworker’s head open with a knife and individually tried to suffocate the person with a pillow, the Chronicle reported, primarily based on courtroom paperwork.

The two have been roommates and labored at a restaurant, and the person, recognized as Jingjiu Wang, filed a short lived restraining order towards Zhao that was granted however is now not in impact. Wang couldn’t be instantly reached, the Chronicle reported.

The shootings occurred at California Terra Garden, beforehand often called Mountain Mushroom Farm, and close by Concord Farms.

David Oates, a California Terra Garden spokesperson, stated that he didn’t know the way lengthy Zhao labored there and that he was one in all 35 workers who had stayed when possession modified. Oates declined to supply particulars of the 4 slain employees.

Concord Farms proprietor Aaron Tung stated in an announcement that the farm was ready for extra data earlier than it may remark.

Half Moon Bay is a small, laid-back, coastal and agricultural metropolis about 30 miles (50 kilometers) south of San Francisco. Its sweeping views of the Pacific Ocean make it a preferred spot for hikers and vacationers, who flock there to surf and for an annual large pumpkin pageant.

The new yr has introduced six mass killings in the U.S. in fewer than three weeks, accounting for 39 deaths. Three have occurred in California since Jan. 16, in line with a database compiled by The Associated Press, USA Today and Northeastern University. The database tracks each mass killing — outlined as 4 useless, not together with the offender — in the U.S. since 2006.

The shootings in Half Moon Bay and Monterey Park adopted the killing of a teenage mom, her child and 6 others at a house in California’s Central Valley on Jan. 16. Officials discussing the investigation talked about a potential gang hyperlink to the killings.


Gecker reported from San Francisco. Associated Press writers Janie Har in San Francisco and Sophie Austin in Sacramento, together with researcher Rhonda Shafner in New York, contributed.

Copyright 2023 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This materials will not be printed, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed with out permission.

Suspect in Half Moon Bay farm killings faces 7 murder counts | Region

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Suspect in Half Moon Bay farm killings faces 7 murder counts | Region

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Suspect in Half Moon Bay farm killings faces 7 murder counts | Region

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