El Paso Walmart shooter to plead guilty in racist 2019 massacre

Patrick Crusius allegedly targeted Hispanics in the shooting that killed 23.

January 24, 2023, 10:29 AM

Patrick Crusius will plead guilty to shooting and killing 23 people at an El Paso Walmart in August 2019, according to a new court filing.

Crusius asked the court for a rearraignment hearing after federal prosecutors agreed to take the death penalty off the table.

"Defendant notifies the Court of his intention to enter a plea of guilty to the pending Indictment," the filing said.

PHOTO: El Paso Walmart accused mass shooter Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old male from Allen, Texas, accused of killing 22 and injuring 25, is arraigned, in El Paso, Texas, Oct. 10, 2019.
El Paso Walmart accused mass shooter Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old male from Allen, Texas, accused of killing 22 and injuring 25, is arraigned, in El Paso, Texas, Oct. 10, 2019.
Mark Lambie/Pool via Reuters

Federal prosecutors investigated the shooting as both domestic terrorism and a hate crime because Crusius allegedly targeted Hispanics.

He allegedly told investigators he chose the store near the U.S.-Mexico border because it was frequented by Hispanic shoppers.

Crusius was indicted on 90 charges by federal prosecutors in 2019, including 22 counts of committing a hate crime resulting in death, 22 counts of use of a firearm to commit murder, 23 counts of a hate crime involving an attempt to kill and 23 counts of use of a firearm during a crime. While 22 people died on the day of the shooting or in the next two days, a 23rd person died eight months later.

There were also 23 people injured in the attack.

The 21-year-old Crusius allegedly cased the Walmart unarmed before re-entering with protective ear muffs, safety glasses and an AR-15-style assault rifle. He opened fire indiscriminately even before walking into the store.

Investigators believe Crusius posted a four-page racist, anti-immigrant document on the website 8chan before launching the attack, officials said.

ABC News' Bill Hutchinson and Luke Barr contributed to this report.

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