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CNN’s Victor Blackwell breaks down covering Buffalo shooting: ‘I’ve done 15 of these’

CNN anchor Victor Blackwell became emotional Monday while reporting outside Tops Friendly Market, the scene of a mass shooting in Buffalo, N.Y., that left 10 people dead over the weekend. 

“I’ve done 15 of these. At least the ones I can count,” Blackwell said on the air. 

“And we keep having the conversation about Democrats will say guns, Republicans will say mental health and nothing will change. And I’ll probably do another one this year,” he added, his voice shaking.

“Is this the way we’re supposed to live?” Blackwell asked. “Are we destined to just keep doing this city after city? Have we just resigned that this is what we are going to be?”

Blackwell’s remarks came after 13 people — 11 of whom were Black — were killed or injured in the mass shooting on Saturday afternoon.

Payton Gendron, the 18-year-old suspect in the shooting, allegedly planned the attack in a location with a significant Black population, according to authorities. 

In a manifesto he published online, Gendron made reference to previous mass shooters who inspired his actions, including Dylann Roof, who in 2015 killed nine Black churchgoers in Charleston, S.C, and Brenton Harrison Tarrant, who killed 51 Muslims during prayer services in New Zealand. 

Gendron specifically claimed that Tarrant “had radicalized him the most.”

He now faces first-degree murder charges and has pleaded not guilty. 

Prominent civil rights attorney Ben Crump, who is representing the family of one of the Buffalo shooting victims, called the shooting an “act of domestic terrorism” on Monday.

“We can’t sugarcoat it. We can’t try to explain it away talking about mental illness. No, this was an act of domestic terrorism perpetrated by a young white supremacist. There is no question about his intentions,” Crump said.

Tags Ben Crump Buffalo shooting buffalo shooting CNN CNN Victor Blackwell Victor Blackwell

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