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Accused Atlanta mass shooter was previously student at a UNG campus
Robert Aaron Long
Before Robert Aaron Long, the accused shooter in eight murders in the Atlanta area was arrested on Tuesday, the Cherokee County Sheriff's Office released this picture of him fleeing the scene of one of the shootings.

University of North Georgia President Bonita Jacobs said in an email on Thursday to the school’s students, faculty and staff that Robert Aaron Long, the suspect in a spree of eight murders on Tuesday, March 16, previously attended UNG’s Cumming campus.

In the email, Jacobs said Long was “was enrolled briefly in 2017-2018 at our Cumming Campus” and called the killings “tragic and disturbing.”

“Let me be clear — hate, racism and violence have no place in the UNG community, and this incident does not reflect the character of our community or the values we uphold,” Jacobs said in the email, which was sent on Thursday afternoon.

“My heart and prayers are with the family and friends of those murdered this week, as well as any students and colleagues in our UNG community who are fearful as a result of racist rhetoric and/or violence. Know that you are not alone, and we are committed to ensuring UNG continues to be an environment that is safe and welcoming. At UNG, we support all Nighthawks, and we will continue to prioritize safety and respect on our campuses.”

A day after the shootings, investigators were trying to unravel what might have compelled 21-year-old Robert Aaron Long to commit the worst mass killing in the U.S. in almost two years.

Long told police that Tuesday’s attack was not racially motivated. He claimed to have a “sex addiction,” and authorities said he apparently lashed out at what he saw as sources of temptation. But those statements spurred outrage and widespread skepticism given the locations and that six of the eight victims were women of Asian descent.

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