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Biden administration condemns attack on 3 Palestinian students

The shooting has drawn national attention as potentially another example of the conflict in the Middle East spilling over into U.S. violence.
Biden Administration condemns attack on 3 Palestinian students
Posted at 4:11 PM, Nov 27, 2023
and last updated 2023-11-28 07:29:48-05

The suspect in the shooting of three Palestinian students was arraigned Monday in a Vermont courtroom.

Jason Eaton, appearing on video for court, pleaded not guilty to three counts of attempted murder. The judge said a bail hearing date will be set in the coming days.

"This horrific unprovoked attack was a tragic violation of the values and character of this welcoming, inclusive community," said Mayor Miro Weinberger.

During a press conference, Burlington police detailed the moment Eaton was arrested.

"ATF agents were greeted by a man who stepped out of the hall out of the door towards them with his palms up at waist height and stated something to the effect of 'I've been waiting for you,'" said Jon Murad, Burlington's chief of police.

While the investigation is ongoing, Burlington police would not say if they're classifying this incident as a hate crime.

Eaton is accused of shooting three college students of Palestinian descent. According to police, Eaton walked over to the three men and without saying a word fired four rounds. 

At the time of the shooting two of the students were wearing keffiyeh scarves — a well-known symbol of Palestinian support.

Police did not disclose a motive, but relatives of at least one of the victims believe this incident was a hate crime.

"I moved here 15 years ago, and I never imagined that this sort of thing could happen. I believe the families fear this was motivated by hate," said Rich Price, the victim's uncle. 

The shooting has drawn national attention as potentially another example of the conflict in the Middle East spilling over into U.S. violence. 

U.S. Attorney General Merrick Garland said the Department of Justice is investigating the incident. The Biden administration  condemned the attack.

"While we are waiting for more facts, we know this: There is absolutely no place for hate in America," said Karine Jean-Pierre, the White House press secretary.

Both the Council on American-Islamic Relations and the Anti-Defamation League have reported a rise in harassment, bias and assault since Hamas' attack on Oct. 7.

SEE MORE: Suspect in Vermont shooting of Palestinian students pleads not guilty


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