Kori Ali Muhammad, the man accused of killing three white men in a shooting spree in Fresno, California, made his first appearance in court Friday.
After entering the courtroom yelling, “Let black people go!” a Fresno County judge ordered a psychiatric evaluation for Muhammad after his repeated interruptions. The suspect also yelled about reparations for blacks before the judge rescheduled his arraignment.
Muhammad, who is black, is charged with specifically targeting whites during his alleged shooting spree. He faces the death penalty if convicted. The week before, Muhammad also allegedly shot and killed a motel security guard.
Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dryer said Wednesday that Muhammad laughed when cops asked him about the shootings.
“He was going to kill as many white males as possible and that’s what he set out to do that day. He said he did not like white men and said white people were responsible for keeping black people down,” Dyer said.
During his questioning, Muhammad told investigators he was a Muslim, but also practiced voodoo and prayed to several gods. Prior to his arrest for the slayings, Muhammad developed an extensive criminal record. Between 1997 and 2004, Muhammad was convicted of nine crimes ranging from criminal threats, a gun conviction, and driving under the influence. In October 2006, he plead guilty and spent time in federal prison for possession of crack cocaine with the intent to distribute and for being a felon in possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.
His family noticed growing hostility against whites, noting how he’d post on social media about black separatism, “Black Lives Matter,” and hatred of white people.