Harrowing radio calls captured the chaos that unfolded at the Tops supermarket in Buffalo, where a cop told the dispatcher to send “as many cars as you possibly can” — and another reported, “We have bodies down here!”
In the first transmission about 2:30 p.m. Saturday, the dispatcher sent a couple of patrol cars to the scene on Jefferson Avenue in response to a “shots fired” call, the Buffalo News reported.
About a minute later, cops and firefighters reported seeing bodies strewn outside the supermarket, according to the news outlet, which culled the transmissions from Broadcastify.com.
“Radio, send as many cars as you possibly can!” an officer yells about 2:33 p.m., The News reported.
The dispatcher then informs other units about a “possible active shooter at Tops.”
Firefighters reported seeing at least three people down on the ground and that “there might be an individual with body armor,” according to the outlet.
Moments later, they said police had the suspect, Payton Gendron, 18, “cornered” and “have him.”
The alleged deranged mass shooter was reportedly in police custody just six minutes after police were dispatched – but not before he allegedly slaughtered 10 people and wounded three.
At about 2:37 p.m., firefighters said officers were inside “working on clearing the store – and about a minute later, police reported finding the first three victims.
“We have bodies down here,” said an officer who told the dispatcher to send homicide detectives.
A few minutes later, another cop called for reinforcements because of the multiple bodies, bullets and magazines found at the scene. He also asked for the Crime Scene Unit to be sent for evidence collection.
And at about 2:48 p.m., an officer said there were employees who had locked themselves in a room near customer service amid the rampage.
Gendron, of Conklin, New York, was arraigned Saturday evening in Buffalo City Court, where his court-appointed lawyer pleaded not guilty to first-degree murder charges on his behalf.
He had driven some 200 miles from his home near Binghamton to carry out the sick mass shooting and was heavily armed and wearing tactical gear, officials said. Eleven of the victims were black and two were white.
The FBI was investigating the incident as both “a hate crime and a case of racially-motivated violent extremism,” Special Agent Stephen Belongia has said.