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Warrants say New Zealand attack inspired synagogue shooting

Posted at 3:56 PM, Jul 31, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-31 18:56:27-04

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Newly released search warrants give the clearest indication yet that the New Zealand attacks on mosques inspired a San Diego man to open fire during a Passover service at a California synagogue in April, killing one woman and injuring three others.

The documents released Wednesday show that suspect John T. Earnest expressed regret in a text message that he missed seeing the livestream video of the New Zealand killings in March and praised that shooter’s writings as “spot on with everything.”

Days later, Earnest set fire to a mosque and made plans for the synagogue attack, the documents said.

A California state judge ordered the 338 pages unsealed at the request of five news organizations, including The Associated Press.

Earnest has pleaded not guilty to federal and state charges.