Sister of Buffalo shooting victim wants ‘killer’ to be locked up for 80 years with a black cell mate
The sister of a defenseless elderly woman allegedly shot dead by white supremacist Payton Gendron wants to see him locked up for the next 80 years – with a black cell mate.
Devastated Barbara Massey said her first instinct was to call for the death penalty for ‘evil’ Gendron, 18, who allegedly went on the rampage at Tops Friendly Grocery in Buffalo Saturday afternoon, killing her sister Katherine, 72, and nine others.
But she now says spending the rest of his life behind bars with an African American would be a more fitting punishment for avowed racist Gendron, who detailed his hatred of blacks and Jews in a rambling 180-page manifesto.
‘I only saw his face for the first time today when it popped up on my phone,’ Massey, 64, told DailyMail.com, fighting back tears.
‘At first I wanted to kill him, to choke him out then bring him back and choke him out again. But that’s not me.’
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Barbara Massey wants to see Payton Gendron, 18, who is accused of killing 10 people at Tops Friendly Grocery in Buffalo Saturday, including her sister Katherine, 72, locked up for the next 80 years – with a black cell mate
Katherine Massey, 72, was gunned down in a shooting that claimed the lives of 10 people at a Buffalo supermarket on Saturday
Massey said her sister Katherine was dropped off at Tops Friendly Grocery by their brother moments before the gunman pulled up outside and started shooting
‘I thought about it all night and I would like him to be in there for 70, 80 years. I want him to wake up every day with a black person or a Jewish person there next to him and have to deal with that.
‘These are your neighbors for the rest of your freaking life. You need to sit here boy. I just hope they don’t give him something to hang himself with. He shot my sister in the face, I can’t get over that.’
Massey said Katherine was dropped off at Tops Friendly Grocery by their brother Warren moments before Gendron of Conklin, New York allegedly pulled up outside and started shooting.
When Katherine didn’t answer her phone, Massey raced down to the police cordon and begged cops to let her past to search for her beloved sibling.
When a bystander offered to show her shocking social media clips showing several of the victims slumped dead in the parking lot, she refused to watch.
‘I couldn’t look at that. I was still holding out hope. I just kept begging the police, please let me find my sister,’ Massey said.
Massey said Katherine was dropped off at Tops Friendly Grocery by their brother Warren moments before Gendron of Conklin, New York allegedly started shooting
Massey said when Katherine didn’t answer her phone, she raced down to the police cordon and begged cops to let her past to search for her beloved sibling
Katherine’s death was confirmed on Sunday, Massey said
As the hours ticked by she feared the worst but confirmation of Katherine’s death only came Sunday when a coroner confirmed a woman matching her description was found with a fatal gunshot to the head.
‘The coroner was wonderful, she even cried,’ Massey added.
‘She said can you describe Kat and I said, she’s small, she black but she has blue eyes, she’s fair skinned. Her hair is mostly grey, it’s cut short. She may have a little scar under her breast. She called me back 20 minutes later, it was her.’
Katherine and Massey grew up together on Cherry Street in central Buffalo, the same road where their extended family have lived for the past seven decades.
Katherine worked at Blue Cross Blue Shield for 40 years, and was never married, lavishing kindness instead on her friends, family and grand nephews and nieces, Massey explained.
After retiring ten years ago, she turned her attention to sprucing up their block, mowing the grass, cleaning up trash and successfully campaigning for new trees and road improvements.
She also contributed to the neighborhood newspaper, the Challenger – including penning an editorial about the menace of gun crime and the need for tougher controls on firearms.
‘Kat was the sweetest little thing. The heaviest her weight has ever been was 112 pounds,’ added Massey.
‘She was very intelligent, she would write letters, she would volunteer at City Hall. She would go to the Family Dollar and buy something for everybody. She was the glue. She was everything to us. If you did something for Kat she would never forget it.’
‘If I know my sister, she would have said to this guy, c’mon baby, put that gun down. That’s why I think he shot my sister. We can’t even have an open casket because he shot her in the head.’
Massey said her own family is multi-cultural and she struggles to understand how anyone – let alone a teenager – could hate another race so badly he was willing to kill’
Family members of victims from the Tops market shooting are consoled during services at True Bethel Baptist Church on Sunday a day after 10 people were shot in Buffalo
Massey said her own family is multi-cultural and she struggles to understand how anyone – let alone a teenager – could hate another race so badly he was willing to kill.‘
‘Our family is a rainbow, my husband is Indian. My niece’s boyfriend is Italian. We don’t do race,’ she told DailyMail.com.
‘Someone has taught it to him. I know there’s a lot of crazy people but he’s 18. You don’t just wake up and be prejudiced. He still has milk on his breath.’
Gendron has pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder following Saturday’s attack. He is being held without bail and faces life in prison.
Due back in court Thursday, the teen is currently on suicide watch and is being held in a separate unit from other inmates, the sheriff of Erie County, John Garcia, said at the news conference Sunday