Last Tuesday, Delaina Ashley Yaun went to a spa in an Atlanta suburb to get a massage with her husband, Mario González, when her life was tragically cut short. Yaun was one of the victims of a gunman who opened fire at Young’s Asian Massage and then two other Atlanta-area spas, killing eight people.
That day, González says he not only dealt with the horror of the shooting, but was detained by police officers for hours without knowing if his wife was dead or alive, he told the Spanish-language news site Mundo Hispánico.
González and Yaun, who was 33, had recently gotten married and welcomed their first child together, a baby girl. González said the couple went to the spa for massages together, adding that his wife was exhausted from working every day. “We were happy, content, she’d just gotten off work.” he told Mundo Hispánico.
“After an hour, almost at the end, I heard gunfire,” he said. “I couldn’t see anything… I thought it was in the room where my wife was.”
“I was afraid, I didn’t open the door because I was afraid,” he said. “The police came, and what did they do? They arrested me.”
González said he was detained by the officers in Cherokee County just moments after the shooting and was taken to a patrol car where he waited for four hours. He showed marks on his wrists he said were from handcuffs.
González remained detained while the suspect, later identified as 21-year-old Robert Aaron Long, allegedly continued his rampage — and, according to his timeline, even after Long was captured.
As he sat inside the police car, González says he felt “chills.” He described seeing the victims’ bloody bodies laid out. He didn’t know if they were dead, and he said he wasn’t allowed to see his wife or approach the scene.
“When they learned I was the husband they told me she was dead,” he said. “When I wanted to know before the law, no… I don’t know, maybe because I’m Mexican.” He added, “Truth be told, they treated me badly.”
“Was I consoled? No,” he said. “I think it’s not right. Something should be done. What I need right now, what I need more than anything is help because I’ve got a girl and a boy.”
“Who is going to bring my wife back?” he said.
González said the person who killed his wife should “pay” and that he deserves the death penalty.
“He left me with an 8-month-old daughter, what am I going to do?” he said, adding that his job alone is not enough to make ends meet.
“It’s a moment no one wants, that they take from you the thing you loved most in your life,” González. “All that’s left is for me to try and keep going, be strong and keep going with her.”
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