New York Post

Class nut to ‘killer’


Buffalo’s accused teen mass shooter once wore a full hazmat suit to school during the pandemic — and was later hospitaliz­ed for a day and a half after threatenin­g classmates, it was revealed Sunday.

The new details emerged as neighbors of suspect Payton Gendron and his parents revealed to The Post how the 18year-old hid his simmering racial hatred before fatally gunning down 10 people at a supermarke­t Saturday afternoon.

State Police brought Gendron to a local hospital “for a mental evaluation” in June 2021 after he made a “generalize­d threat” of violence against his school, Buffalo Police Commission­er Joseph Gramaglia said Sunday.

Gramaglia did not provide details about the threat, but a government official told the Buffalo News that Gendron “made statements indicating that he wanted to do a shooting, either at a graduation ceremony, or sometime after.’’

He “went to a local hospital, he was there for . . . about a day and a half, evaluated and then released,” Gramaglia said.

Hazmat gear

The teen was not on the radar of federal law enforcemen­t — even after allegedly writing a 181-page, race-hatefilled manifesto online at some point detailing his murderous plans for Buffalo.

“There was nothing picked up on the State Police intelligen­ce. Nothing that was picked up on the FBI intelligen­ce. Nobody called in any complaint,” Gramaglia said. “The State Police did their job to the fullest that they could at that time.”

High-school classmates told The New York Times Gendron bizarrely wore a hazmat suit — “boots, gloves, everything” — for a week last year during the lead-up to graduation.

“Everyone was just staring

at him,” Nathan Twitchell, 19, told the outlet.

Gendron was a former student at Broome County Community College, where he aspired to be an engineer like his parents, Paul and Pamela Gendron, who both work at the state Department of Transporta­tion. The parents were interviewe­d by the FBI and are cooperatin­g with the investigat­ion, sources said.

Payton allegedly targeted the Tops Friendly Market because it was in an area with a high concentrat­ion of black residents — and even launched a “reconnaiss­ance’’ mission the day before to scope it out, cops said.

He is currently under suicide watch while in custody, authoritie­s said.

Payton had been living under the radar with his family in the quiet, well-to-do Binghamton suburb of Conklin, where he delivered papers as a youth before taking his most recent job at a local deli, neighbors told The Post Sunday.

“It’s just something out of a Lifetime movie,” a resident said. “They keep saying this, this racist supremacis­t deal that, you know, he was involved in. Nobody around here had any inclinatio­n of that.”

Joseph Sharak, 21, who has known the suspect since childhood, said, “He was a shy kid.”

 ?? ?? ORIGINS: Payton Gendron lived in an upscale Binghamton suburb with his family (above).
ORIGINS: Payton Gendron lived in an upscale Binghamton suburb with his family (above).

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