At least twenty-six people were killed and at least 20 more were injured Sunday in the deadliest mass shooting in Texas history.
The murders occurred around 11:30 a.m. at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, when a young white male wearing tactical gear left the Valero gas station, drove across the street, exited his car and began firing an AR-15 style weapon at the church. The assailant — wearing a ballistic vest —entered the house of worship and attacked the congregants, murdering over two dozen and wounding nearly as many, with victims ranging from 5-years-old to 72.
Among those killed was the 14-year-old daughter of the church’s pastor, Frank Pomeroy (Pomeroy and his wife were out of state at the time of the murders). Sherry Pomeroy told CBS News:
”My husband and I were…out of town in two different states. We lost our…daughter today and many friends…Neither of us have made it back into town yet to personally see the devastation. I am at the Charlotte airport trying to get home as soon as I can."
The shooter has been identified as 26-year-old Devin Patrick Kelley. He served in the US Air Force at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico from 2010 until his discharge, according to Ann Stefanek, Air Force spokeswoman. Kelley was court-martialed in 2012 for assaulting his wife and their child. For his crimes, he served a year in prison. He received a bad conduct discharge in 2014, and his rank was reduced. Kelley purchased his AR-556 rifle, which he used in the murders, at an Academy Sports & Outdoors in San Antonio 18 months ago.
”I gave them the direction where we were going, what road and everything and the vehicle was in sight and I was picking up, getting closer and closer to it. We hit about 95 going down 539 trying to catch this guy until he eventually lost control on his own.”
Kelley was later found dead at the Wilson/Guadalupe County line.
President Trump, who was in Japan on his first trip to Asia as President, tweeted:
“May God be w/ the people of Sutherland Springs, Texas. The FBI & law enforcement are on the scene. I am monitoring the situation from Japan.”
Texas Senator John Cornyn lamented the “truly heartbreaking” tragedy in a tweet Sunday, and he called upon praying Texans to support the community and emergency personnel.
Neighboring pastor Mike Clements said of the First Baptist congregation:
"They don't have a lot of money, but they are always willing to give. These people are merciful people. A lot of them will be forgiving with what happened.”
One thing is certain: while Americans are praying for and reaching out to those in need in Texas, the Left has already begun exploiting the atrocity for political currency. They are using the murders of these innocents as soapboxes to stand upon in an effort to further erode the 2nd Amendment. Certainly, they will find it inconvenient for their narrative that a neighbor fired at the shooter and doubtlessly prevented any further murders. But the solution of good-guy-with-a-gun to the problem of bad-guy-with-a-gun will likely be muted in the mainstream media as the Left pursues its anti-liberty agenda in spite of the facts.