New York Gov. Kathy Hochul called for executives of social media companies to be held accountable on Sunday after a White 18-year-old allegedly posted a racist 180-page manifesto online before livestreaming a shooting rampage at a supermarket in a predominantly Black Buffalo neighborhood on Saturday afternoon.
Hochul said the suspect, Payton Gendron, had been on law enforcement's radar "just as a high school student with respect to something he wrote in high school" and called upon "our law enforcement as well as our social media platforms" to investigate how much was known about the shooter.
"The CEOs of those companies need to be held accountable and assure all of us that they're taking every step humanly possible to be able to monitor this information. How these depraved ideas are fermenting on social media, it's spreading like a virus now," Hochul told ABC News on Sunday.
"There's not enough monitoring because clearly this information was out there. Don't they have a responsibility? I know it's a huge, vast undertaking, but these companies have a lot of money," Hochul said. "They have resources. They have technology. Key words show up, they need to be identified, someone needs to watch this, and to shut it down the second it appears."
Gendron is accused of traveling hundreds of miles from his hometown of Conklin to Buffalo and opening fire on a Tops Friendly Market on Saturday, livestreaming most of the attack on the social media platform Twitch, officials have said.
The 18-year-old allegedly killed 10 people and injured at least three more. Eleven of the 13 victims were Black.
"This individual came here with the express purpose of taking as many Black lives as he could," Buffalo Mayor Byron Brown said Sunday.
A spokesperson for Twitch said that the stream was taken down within two minutes.
Gendron was previously hospitalized for one-and-a-half days in June 2021 after making a "generalized threat" directed at a high school in his New York hometown, according to Buffalo Police Commissioner Joseph Gramaglia.
"He was evaluated, and then he was released. As far as when we say 'On the radar,' there was nothing picked up on the state police intelligence, nothing that was picked up on the FBI intelligence," Gramaglia said at a press conference on Sunday. "Nobody called in. Nobody called any complaints."
Fox News's Stephanie Pagones and Adam Sabes contributed to this report.