White House press secretary Sean Spicer said Friday that it was “absurd” to suggest any connection between President Donald Trump’s rhetoric and a triple shooting in Kansas that some witnesses described as racially motivated.
“Any loss of life is tragic but I’m not going to get into that kind of — to suggest that there’s any correlation I think is a bit absurd, so I’m not going to get any further than that,” Spicer told reporters during a press gaggle recorded by the Washington Post.
Adam Purinton, a 51-year-old resident of Olathe, Kansas, was arrested on Thursday in connection with a triple shooting the night before.
He allegedly shouted “get out of my country” before opening fire on Wednesday and later told a bartender that he had killed two Middle Eastern men, according to a report by the Kansas City Star.
A bartender at the bar where the shooting took place said that Purinton used “racial slurs” before he opened fire.
Alok Madasani and Srinivas Kuchibhotla, immigrants from India, were among the three men wounded and transported to area hospitals, where Kuchibhotla later died.
Purinton was charged on Thursday with one count of murder and two counts of attempted murder.