Man accused of Asian spa deadly shootings faces death penalty in Fulton County

A day of testimony wrapped up Thursday afternoon in the Asian spa shooter hearing.

Robert Aaron Long is already serving a life sentence for killing four people in Cherokee County.

He pleaded not guilty to killing four people in Fulton County.

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Long walked inside Fulton County Superior Court appearing much different than his first mug shot.

The accused Asian spa shooter is noticeably thinner, now wears glasses, and has a short haircut.

Long, who pleaded guilty to killing four people at an Asian spa in Cherokee County, went before a judge after he pleaded not guilty to killing four people at Asian spas in Fulton County.

Police said the shootings were racially motivated.

Long now faces hate crime charges and the death penalty in Fulton County.

In court, attorneys for Long argued that because he was 21 years old at the time of the killings, his brain wasn’t fully developed and that he was more prone to impulsive behavior and therefore should not face execution.

Clinical Neuropsychologist, Dr. Joette James, took the stand for the defense.

“If it’s a negative emotional state then there is more attention that is paid to that versus the ability to show good judgment, respond consistently, respond effectively,” James said.

But prosecutors pushed back arguing that Long’s age should not be a consideration because he was an adult at the time and not an adolescent.


“Dzhokhar Tsarnaev and Dylan Roof were 19 and 21 years old when they committed their crimes and both received the death penalty in federal court and both of them in the past few years have had federal court appeals reject the claims that Long is making today,” a member of the prosecution team said in court.

Authorities said Long confessed to the killings, saying he targeted the spas because he had a sex addiction.

Prosecutors said they will also look into that confession to get a conviction in Fulton County.

The hearing is set to resume Friday morning.

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