Story highlights

Adam Purinton faces murder and attempted murder charges

FBI is investigating whether the shooting was motivated by bias

CNN  — 

The man accused of shooting two technology workers from India and another man at a bar in Kansas last week had his first court appearance on Monday in a high-profile case that is being investigated as a possible hate crime.

Adam Purinton, 51, faces one charge of first-degree murder and two charges of attempted first-degree murder in last Wednesday’s shooting in Olathe that killed one person and injured two others.

The incident has raised worries among Indians and other communities about possible violence against foreign workers in the United States.

A motive has not yet been established, and the FBI is looking into the case to determine whether the shootings would be considered federal hate crimes.

Appearing in court via video conference, Purinton looked haggard and was soft-spoken. He was assigned a court-appointed attorney, and his bond remains set at $2 million. His next court date is March 9.

‘Get out of my country?’ Indians say they still love America

In this undated photo provided by Kranti Shalia, Srinivas Kuchibhotla, right, poses for photo with his wife Sunayana Dumala in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. In the middle of a crowded bar, a 51-year-old former air traffic controller yelled at two Indian men - Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani - to "get out of my country," witnesses said, then opened fire in an attack that killed one of the men and wounded the other, as well as a third man who tried to help, Thursday, Feb 23, 2017, in Olathe, Kan. (Kranti Shalia via AP)
Shooting of Indian tech worker stuns India
01:15 - Source: CNN

What allegedly happened

The incident began after a man became agitated with two 32-year-old Indian men, Srinivas Kuchibhotla and Alok Madasani, at Austins Bar & Grill, witness Jeremy Luby told CNN.

Ian Grillot, a regular at the bar, approached the man and asked him to leave, according to CNN affiliate KMBC.

“He said (to Grillot), ‘Why are you standing up for them?’ He emphasized ‘them,’ as if ‘them’ was a derogatory term,” Luby told CNN.

The suspect left the bar and drove away, according to Grillot. He allegedly returned later and allegedly opened fire in the bar, according to prosecutors.

One witness reportedly heard the suspect yell, “Get out of my country” before shooting, the Kansas City Star reports, though police have not corroborated that report.

Srinivas Kuchibhotla with his wife Sunayana Dumala.

Kuchibhotla was killed. Madasani and Grillot survived, according to authorities.

Grillot, who was shot in the hand and chest, was praised as a hero for attempting to intervene and subdue the suspect, he said in a video from his hospital bed.

Purinton was arrested hours later at an Applebee’s restaurant in Clinton, Missouri, about 70 miles away from Olathe.

In 911 calls released by CNN affiliate KSHB, an Applebee’s bartender told police that a man had admitted to shooting two “Iranian” people in Olathe and was looking for a place to hide.

‘Rage and malice’

On Sunday, Madasani spoke at a vigil in Olathe set up to honor Kuchibhotla, his co-worker and best friend, according to CNN affiliate KCTV.

“It was rage and malice in an individual’s heart that killed my friend, killed our friend,” Madasani said. “It’s an isolated incident that doesn’t reflect the true spirit of Kansas, Midwest and United States.”

Kuchibhotla and Madasani both worked at Garmin, the tech company that makes GPS devices.

Kuchibhotla’s widow said that she had been worried about violence against foreigners in the United States, but Kuchibhotla had told her not to worry.

“I told him many 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 KCTV.

Former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton tweeted a link to an article on the shooting and called on President Donald Trump to “step up and speak out” against “threats and hate crimes.”

CNN’s Ryan Young and Deanna Hackney contributed to this report.