Democratic Representative Rashida Tlai on Wednesday blamed “white supremacy” for Tuesday’s deadly shooting in Jersey City perpetrated by a couple with suspected ties to a black supremacist group.
“This is heartbreaking. White supremacy kills,” the Michigan Democrat wrote in a since-deleted tweet addressing the shooting. Tlaib deleted her tweet later on Thursday.
A man and woman exited a stolen van Tuesday afternoon and fired gunshots into a kosher grocery store in Jersey City, killing a police detective and three others. Investigators believe the couple were former members of the Black Hebrew Israelites, a group known to have antipathy towards white and Jewish people. The couple were shot and killed on the scene.
Authorities said the male shooter had previously posted anti-Semitic content online and had targeted the kosher grocery store. Law enforcement investigating Tuesday’s shooting also discovered a pipe bomb in the stolen vehicle the couple drove. The male suspect, 47, was an Army veteran previously incarcerated for a weapons offense, and the female suspect, 50, was his girlfriend.
“From our standpoint, there is no question that this is a hate crime,” Jersey City mayor Steven Fulop said.
Tlaib, one of the first two Muslim congresswomen, has been vocal in calling out others she believes are engaging in racism, including President Trump.
“This President targeted people solely based on their ethic background, their faith, disability, sexual orientation and even source of income,” the congresswoman charged on Tuesday.