Factor in Mass Shooting: a $100 Dispute

Prosecutors say Zhao Chunli in California was angry over order to pay for damage to forklift
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 30, 2023 9:10 AM CST
$100 Dispute May Have Led to Mass Shooting
Chunli Zhao appears for his arraignment at San Mateo Superior Court in Redwood City, Calif., on Jan. 25.   (Shae Hammond/Bay Area News Group via AP, Pool, File)

It appears that seven people were shot to death over a $100 dispute. San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe has confirmed reports that 66-year-old Zhao Chunli grew angry when his boss told him he must pay $100 to cover damage to a forklift at a mushroom farm where he worked in Northern California, reports the AP. Zhao is accused of shooting his supervisor and seven others, one of whom survived, at two Half Moon Bay farms. Last week, Zhao admitted to KNTV that he committed the mass shooting, and the network was the first to report the $100 dispute.

Zhao allegedly thought a different worker was responsible for a collision between his forklift and a bulldozer, but he said he was ordered to pay for the damage anyway. He also said his previous complaints about long days and poor working and living conditions went unheeded, per the Washington Post. In his jailhouse interview, Zhao said he regretted the killings and feared he suffered from mental illness. The San Francisco Chronicle has reported that Zhao was accused of trying to suffocate a co-worker and of separately threatening to kill him at another job in 2013. A judge at that time put a temporary restraining order in effect against Zhao, according to court documents. (More mass shootings stories.)

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