Buffalo Shooting: Employee Claims 911 Hung Up On Her Because She Was Whispering
The massacre that occurred at the Tops grocery store in Buffalo, New York has stunned the U.S. For many, a news report about a mass shooting in America isn't an uncommon occurrence, but like white supremacist Dylan Roof's callous slaying of Black churchgoers back in 2015, this racially-motivated incident has activists in an uproar.
Over the weekend, white supremacist Payton Gendron, 18, reportedly traveled almost 200 miles to a predominately Black neighborhood in Buffalo in order to murder as many Black people as he could at one time.
Gendron donned himself in military attire, armed himself with a semi-automatic rifle with words like "Here's Your Reparations" reportedly written on the side, walked into Tops Family Market—a location that the community reportedly fought to have erected—and opened fire on Black people he came across. One video circulating online allegedly shows Gendron apologizing to a white man inside of the store before firing off shots that would take the lives of 10 people.
Buffalo News reported that a woman named Latisha who was working at Tops during the shooting stated that a police dispatcher hung up on her because she was whispering on her 911 call.
"I can't sleep. I can eat a little bit, but I just keep hearing gunshots and just seeing the bodies," the assistant office manager said. She had been ith Tops for over a decade and spent the last three years in the Buffalo store. During the shooting, Latisha reportedly hid behind the service counter and called for help, but the dispatcher kept telling her to speak louder.
"Ma'am, he's still in the store," Latisha said she told the person on the line. "He's shooting. I'm scared for my life. I don't want him to hear me. Can you please send help? She got mad at me, hung up in my face." Finally, Latisha had to contact her boyfriend and tell him to call the police on her behalf.
For now, Latisha added that she can't fathom returning to work.
"I know a lot of the regulars," Latisha said. "I know a lot of residents that come in there. I've been here for three years. That store is very important to that community. I didn't realize how important it was until I started working there. They love that store. That is just a traumatic experience to have in that community like that."
Meanwhile, that dispatcher has not been named and if Latisha's story is true, it is unclear if the Buffalo police will address the issue.