A shocking series of attacks at three spas in the Atlanta, Georgia, region on Tuesday night stunned the nation. A police investigation quickly identified a suspect in the shootings, Robert Aaron Long, 21, who has been detained by police. On Wednesday, Long was charged with four counts of murder and one count of assault. He is expected to face more charges as the details of his alleged crimes continue to come in.
Long allegedly attacked workers at three distinct spa locations around Atlanta on Tuesday night. Four of the victims have been identified at the time of this writing: Delaina Ashley Yuan, 33, Paul Andre Michels, 54, Xiaojie Yan, 49, of Kennesaw; and Daoyou Feng, 44.
Those four women were attacked at a location called Young’s Asian Massage, located in Acworth, Georgia. Police have not identified the other four victims of the shooting attacks.
Police have stated that they don’t believe there was a racial motivation for the attacks. Anti-Asian attacks have been abnormally high since 2020, however, leading many online to suggest that the crimes were, indeed, racially motivated to some degree. Six of the eight people killed in the attack were Asian, according to authorities.
Long has reportedly confessed to the killings, according to authorities. During a press conference on Wednesday, police allege that Long frequented at least some of the spas that were targeted in the attack. Authorities have framed the attack as being targeted against victims of “opportunity,” not due to their racial backgrounds.
According to police, Long allegedly admitted to having some form of sex addiction, and that he had an “obsession’ regarding his victims.
By arresting Long, police believe they also stopped the immediate threat of crimes occurring right after the spa shootings. Long reportedly told authorities that he had planned to travel south, to Florida, to carry out more attacks had he not been intercepted by police. His arrest was the culmination of an investigation that was aided by Long’s own family after they saw surveillance footage of him released by police.
Long was arrested after a pursuit by police, and authorities confiscated a firearm from his vehicle. In addition to Long’s own alleged admission of guilt, surveillance footage from near the three sites of the attacks places Long’s vehicle at those scenes. According to police, Long’s decision to target the women working at the spas seems to have been related to wanting to “eliminate” a possible “temptation” relating to his obsession.