Sheriff’s office says no further comment in deadly spa shootings

The Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office said it will not be making any additional comments in the deadly spa shootings.

Robert Aaron Long, 21, was arrested on four counts of malice murder and one count of aggravated assault for the shooting at Young’s Asian Massage in Cherokee County on the afternoon of March 16 that killed 33-year-old Delaina Ashley Yaun, 54-year-old Paul Andre Michels, 49-year-old Xiaojie Tan, and 44-year-old Daoyou Feng and injured 30-year-old Elcias R. Hernandez-Oritiz.

Cherokee County Sheriff Frank Reynolds issued a statement on Monday that reads in part:

"Our main focus is investigating this heinous crime and ensuring all facts and evidence are gathered to present to the District Attorney of the Blue Ridge Judicial Circuit for prosecution. In an effort to preserve the case for prosecution, the Cherokee Sheriff’s Office will not be making any additional comments about this case at this time. We understand there is great interest in this case across the country and around the world. I and the CSO investigators will work directly with the District Attorney and other law enforcement agencies involved to ensure Mr. Long is brought to justice."

Capt. Jay Baker with the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office in Georgia.

The law enforcement agency drew national criticism after sheriff’s office spokesperson Captain Jay Baker characterized the murder suspect as being "fed up and had a bad day" as it relates to Long's sexual addiction claims. Baker was removed as a spokesperson from the case.

In a press release, Reynolds said, "Comments made by Cherokee County Sheriff’s Office Captain Jay Baker have become the subject of much debate and anger. In as much as his words were taken or construed as insensitive or inappropriate, they were not intended to disrespect any of the victims, the gravity of this tragedy, or express empathy or sympathy for the suspect."

In addition to Long confessing to the Cherokee County shooting, he also confessed to the shooting at two Atlanta spas that killed 74-year-old Soon Chung Park, 51-year-old Hyun Jung Grant, 69-year-old Suncha Kim, and 63-year-old Yong Ae Yue. He faces four counts of murder from Atlanta police in those shootings.

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