Thursday 22 March 2018

Macy's shootings suspect 'like a zombie' when arrested

Accused; Arcan Cetin. Photo: AP
Accused; Arcan Cetin. Photo: AP

Harriet Alexander

A 20-year-old Turkish man is expected to appear in court today on charges of killing five people at a Macy's department store in Washington state, as the FBI said it was not ruling out an act of terrorism.

Arcan Cetin, from Oak Harbor, Washington, offered no resistance when he was arrested on Saturday night, saying nothing and appearing to be in a "zombie-like" state, police said.

On Friday night he had entered a branch of Macy's at the Cascade Mall in Burlington, about 100km north of Seattle, and opened fire at the make-up counter.

He killed four women, aged 16 to 95, instantly. A fifth victim, a man who was airlifted from the scene, died later.

Cetin, who emigrated from Turkey as a child, had a violent past, had been arrested for drunk driving and was recommended by a judge not to be allowed to own a firearm. Skagit County court records show three domestic-violence assault charges, with the victim identified as his stepfather.

Cetin was told by an Island County district court judge in December that he could no longer own a firearm. However, the stepfather urged the judge not to impose a no-contact order, which would require him to surrender his gun, saying his stepson was "going through a hard time".

Cetin's social media postings gave little hint of extremist tendencies , with his Twitter feed musing over Miley Cyrus, Turkish food, and the videogame Halo.

The previous month he had tweeted "we win I vote for Hillary Clinton" - his only political reference.

However, in April 2015, Mr Cetin had shown a flash of anger, tweeting: "Crazy how when you crack open someone's shell they're everything you spent your time running from."

Police on Saturday were unable to confirm reports he had yelled a woman's name before opening fire. It was unclear whether he knew his victims. (© Daily Telegraph, London)

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