The widow of an Indian man killed in a Kansas bar said Friday she was constantly worried about violence against foreigners, but her husband had assured her everything would be OK.
“I told him many a times, ‘Should we think about going back? Should we think about going to a different country?’ He said, No,” Sunayana Dumala said, according to video recorded by CNN affiliate KCTV.
Srinivas Kuchibhotla, 32, died Thursday from wounds after being shot at a bar and restaurant in Olathe where he was having an after-work beer with a good friend.
Hours later police arrested Adam W. Purinton, 51, in Clinton, Missouri, about 70 miles away.
Purinton, who also is accused of shooting two other people, has been charged with one count of premeditated first-degree murder and two counts of attempted premeditated first-degree murder. His bond has been set at $2 million. It’s unclear whether he’s retained a lawyer or entered a plea.
The victim’s friend, Alok Madasani, 32, and bar patron Ian Grillot, 24, suffered injuries, authorities said.
The FBI has joined the investigation to determine whether the shootings are federal hate crimes. Authorities said the suspect’s alleged motive is still being investigated.
Dumala called for Washington to do something about hate crimes.
“I need an answer, I need an answer from the government. I need an answer for everyone out there,” she said, pausing midway to catch her breath. “Not just for my husband … but for everyone, all those people of any race.”
Kuchibhotla and Madasani are engineers at Garmin, and are originally from India, the Kansas City Star reported.
The incident started after the suspect became agitated at the bar, where patrons were watching a basketball game, Grillot said.
While he did not provide specifics on what the suspect was doing, witnesses told local media they heard him yell, “Get out of my country.”
Police have not corroborated the statements.
“I opened the door and was like, ‘I’m going to have to ask you to leave, sir. There’s no reason to act like that around this bar. This is a family restaurant,’ ” Grillot told CNN affiliate KMBC.
A witness told CNN the suspect asked Grillot: “Why are you standing up for them?” Jeremy Luby said the man emphasized ‘them,’ as if it was a derogatory term.
Luby said the man stumbled around the parking lot for a while, then got in a pickup and left.
The suspect returned and started firing, he said.
“I thought all the trouble was over with, and we were all just sitting and watching the game minding our own business,” Grillot told the affiliate.
Grillot was shot in the hand and chest as he tried to stop the gunman.
“I thought his magazine was empty. So I got up and started chasing him down. I tried to subdue him so that police could come in and do what they needed to do and I guess I miscounted with everything going on. I got behind him. And he turned around and fired a round at me,” he told the affiliate.
The suspect fled on foot as police closed in, the Kansas City Star reported.
Police provided first aid to the three men until paramedics arrived and took them to the hospital, where Kuchibhotla died, Olathe police said.
Indian external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj tweeted that Madasani has been released from hospital. Grillot is still hospitalized.
A search for motive
Nearly six hours after the shootings, Purinton was arrested at a bar in Missouri, the Star reported. He was extradited to Johnson County, Kansas, on Friday and is due in court on Monday afternoon.
Thousands of miles away in India, officials expressed shock at the shootings.
“My heartfelt condolences to bereaved family,” Swaraj, the external affairs minister, tweeted. “I have assured all help and assistance to the family.”
India sent two embassy officials to Kansas to help arrange for the transportation of Kuchibhotla’s remains.