Chunli Zhao: Half Moon Bay shooting suspect once tried to kill roommate by suffocating him with pillow

Chunli Zhao: Half Moon Bay shooting suspect once tried to kill roommate by suffocating him with pillow
Chunli Zhao is suspected of shooting and killing seven people (San Mateo Sheriff's Office)

HALF MOON BAY, CALIFORNIA: The man who was detained for gunning down seven farm workers at two farms in Half Moon Bay on Monday, January 23, reportedly has a criminal past and a history of violent behavior. Mass shooter Chunli Zhao was accused of trying to kill his roommate and coworker in 2013 after he lost a job he was doing at the time. 

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According to the Santa Clara County court documents, a restraining order was filed against Zhao. They both worked at a restaurant when Zhao reportedly lost his job. The killer allegedly threatened roommate Jingjiu Wang and tried to suffocate him with a pillow after sneaking into his room, court docs state. “Mr Zhao said to me, today I am going to kill you,” Wang reportedly wrote, according to New York Post. “He then took a pillow and started to cover my face and suffocate me.”

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However, Wang fought against Zhao using “all my might,” according to the restraining order. The restraining order was granted by a judge and extended a second time. The documents also note the victim said, "he wants to come back to work. If this can't be done, this will be a bigger problem which will not be good, pleasant for anyone." “Mr. Zhao said he would use a kitchen knife to split my head,” he additionally alleged in the court document. It is not known yet if Wang was a manager at the restaurant where Zhao previously worked. 

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FBI agents arrive at a farm where a mass shooting occurred on January 24, 2023 in Half Moon Bay, California. Seven people were killed at two separate farm locations that were only a few miles apart in Half Moon Bay on January 23. The suspect, Chunli Zhao, was taken into custody a few hours later without incident.
FBI agents arrive at a farm where a mass shooting occurred on January 24, 2023 in Half Moon Bay, California (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

The 66-year-old mass murderer fatally shot seven people at two mushroom farms in the small coastal city of Half Moon Bay. He claimed the lives of four people and wounded one at Mountain Mushroom Farm and then killed three others at another mushroom farm several miles away. Authorities said that both the farms had hired Zhao before he carried on the shooting. 

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The deadly rampage was the third mass shooting in California this month, taking place just days after 11 people were gunned down in a Monterey Park ballroom shooting. Zhao was arrested after he parked his car at a sheriff’s substation, where deputies pulled him from his car.

In an aerial view, San Mateo County sheriff deputies walk through a farm where a mass shooting occurred on January 24, 2023 in Half Moon Bay, California. Seven people were killed at two separate farm locations that were only a few miles apart in Half Moon Bay on January 23. The suspect, Chunli Zhao, was taken into custody a few hours later without incident.
In an aerial view, San Mateo County sheriff deputies walk through a farm where a mass shooting occurred on January 24, 2023 in Half Moon Bay, California (Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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According to ABC-7, San Mateo Sheriff Christina Corpus said that a semi-automatic gun used in the fatal shootings was legally bought and owned. Authorities said some of the victims were Asian and other were Hispanic, and some were migrant workers. 

“For the second time in recent days, California communities are mourning the loss of loved ones in a senseless act of gun violence,” President Biden said Tuesday, January 24. “Even as we await further details on these shootings, we know the scourge of gun violence across America requires stronger action.”

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