The lone gunman and white supremacist who killed 23 people at a Walmart in El Paso in August 2019 will spend the rest of his life behind bars.
According to the El Paso Times, Patrick Crusius, 24, was sentenced to 90 consecutive life sentences for the racially motivated murders. The sentence was announced on Friday (July 7) in federal court in downtown El Paso after a three-day hearing.
“What happened was a cold, calculated scheme targeting immigrants and Hispanics,” said federal prosecutor Ian Martinez Hanna. “A shooting spree that spared no one. It was not a crime of passion. It was not an accident. It was a calculated act that he planned.”
Earlier this year, the gunman pleaded guilty to 90 federal charges stemming from the massacre. Those killed at the stores included residents from El Paso, Juárez, and Germany.
The gunman will serve his sentence at the ADX Florence Supermax federal prison in Colorado. Other inmates who are housed in that facility include Boston Marathon bomber Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Oklahoma City bomber Terry Nichols.
This is not the end of court proceedings for the gunman, however. He can still be sentenced to death when the case goes to trial in the state of Texas. El Paso County District Attorney Bill Hicks said his office is still seeking the death penalty. The state trial has not been set yet.
On the morning of August 3, 2019, the gunman drove 700 miles from Allen, Texas, to El Paso where he carried out the attack with a semiautomatic rifle. He confessed to police that he was targeting Latinos, so they would stop immigrating to the United States.
“The hatred that is white supremacy and the easy access to assault weapons fueled a tragedy that many El Pasoans still live with and we must continue to work for change,” tweeted U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar. “But today, I hope the victims and our community achieve a significant step toward justice.”