Brandon Tsay, the man who disarmed the suspect accused of killing 11 people and injuring nine in last week’s shooting in Monterey Park, California, was invited as a special guest to the State of the Union address on Feb. 7.
Tsay was formally invited by Rep. Judy Chu, D-Calif. President Joe Biden followed up with a similar invitation.
“Only an hour after I talked to [Tsay], President Biden himself asked him to be his guest at the State of the Union. … Brandon, how could you turn me down?” Biden rhetorically asked Chu, according to CBS News footage.
Huu Can Tran, the Monterey Park shooting suspect, reportedly entered the Star Dance Studio with a deadly weapon. Shortly after, Tran reportedly went to the Lai Lai Ballroom and Studio in nearby Alhambra.
According to CBS News, video footage depicts Tsay, 26, wrestling with Tran, 72, and disarming him, a move that might have prevented a second round of gunfire and potentially more deaths.
Los Angeles County Sheriff Robert Luna said the shooting suspect walked into the Alhambra dance hall “with the intent to kill more people,” before being disarmed by Tsay and fleeing the scene.
“This could have been much worse,” said Luna, according to The Hill.
Tran was later found dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Investigators are probing possible motives for the shootings.
In an interview with “Good Morning America” last week, Tsay — who helps his family run the Lai Lai Ballroom & Studio — said he had heard the ballroom’s front door click and came face-to-face with “an Asian man holding a gun.”
“My first thought was, ‘I was going to die here, this is it,'” Tsay told ABC News.
Tsay said the shooter was “looking around the room” as if he was “looking for targets — people to harm. … [he] started prepping the weapon and something came over me,” Tsay said.
“I realized I needed to get the weapon away from him. I needed to take this weapon, disarm him or else everybody would have died.
“When I got the courage, I lunged at him with both my hands, grabbed the weapon and we had a struggle. We struggled into the lobby, trying to get this gun away from each other. He was hitting me across the face, bashing the back of my head.”
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