On Sunday, 26 people were killed and around 20 others were injured after a mass shooting unfolded inside a church sanctuary in rural Sunderland Springs, Texas. The shooting at the First Baptist Church started not long after Sunday morning service began at 11 a.m. It’s the deadliest massacre inside a place of worship in American history, according to the Daily Beast. Texas Gov. Greg Abbott called it the largest mass shooting" in the state's history. And, possibly the most disturbing statistic: Two of America’s five deadliest mass shootings in modern history have occurred in the last 35 days, CNN reports. The victims range in age from 18 months to 72 years old, a regional director with the Texas Department of Public Safety has stated. Here is what we know about the man behind it so far.
1. The gunman, who has been identified as Devin Patrick Kelley, 26, showed up to the church dressed in all-black tactical gear. He was later found dead in his car.
2. Police said an armed civilian shot the gunman outside the church. A witness told CNN affiliate KSAT that he and the armed civilian actually pursued the gunman in a car chase for over ten miles.
3. Kelley was kicked out of the US Air Force for “bad conduct,” according to the Daily Beast in 2014. He was court-martialed in 2012 for assault on his spouse and their child, according to Stefanek. For that, he served a year in confinement. In addition to receiving a bad conduct discharge, he had his rank reduced.
4. In April 2016, Kelley purchased the weapon he allegedly used in Sunday’s shooting: a Ruger AR-556 rifle. According to CNN, law officials said there was no disqualifying information in the background check for the purchase of that gun.
5. Last week Kelley posted a photo of that gun to Facebook with the caption: “She’s a bad bitch.”
6. The Washington Post reports that records show Kelley lived on a property valued at about $800,000 owned by his parents in a rural suburb of San Antonio for some time. Neighbors told local media that the shooter once lived in a barn in back of that home with his wife and child.
7. The Los Angeles Times reports that Kelley developed a new hobby over the last few months: adding strangers from the Sutherland Springs area as Facebook friends and initiating fights with them.
8. He seemed to hate religious people. Nina Rose Nava went to school with him and wrote on Facebook: "In (sic) in complete shock! I legit just deleted him off my fb cause I couldn't stand his post. ...He was always talking about how people who believe in God we're stupid and trying to preach his atheism"
9. Former classmates described him as "crazy," "weird" and an outcast according to the Daily Mail.
10. He was abusive to animals, according to several witnesses. According to the Denver Post, an El Paso County deputy report said, “She stated [Kelley] then began punching the dog with a closed fist near the head and neck area. She stated she witnessed four to five punches and then the male suspect grabbed the dog by the neck and drug him away."
[Photos: Facebook, LinkedIn]
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