26 killed in church attack in Texas' deadliest mass shooting

By: Shelby Lin Erdman, Cox Media Group National Content Desk

Updated:

SUTHERLAND SPRINGS, Texas - LATEST:

  • At least 26 dead, 27 injured
  • Victims range in age from 5 to 72
  • The gunman is dead, identified as Devin Kelley
  • Gunman was dressed in all black, tactical gear

At least 26 people have been killed and 27 injured in a Texas church shooting today, law enforcement sources told ABC News.

The alleged shooter, Devin Kelley of New Braunfels, Texas, is dead, and it appears there is no longer an active threat at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, about 40 miles southeast of San Antonio, police told ABC News affiliate KSAT in San Antonio on Sunday afternoon.

Stay with WSBTV.com and watch Channel 2 Action News at Noon for live updates.

During a news conference early Sunday evening, officials said the shooter dressed in all black, tactical gear fired several shots outside the church before he went inside and opened fire. Officials say a civilian outside the church engaged the suspect then chased him and Kelley crashed his car.

[PHOTOS: Dozens dead, wounded in Texas church shooting]

Officials announced the suspect was found dead in his car. It is unclear if the suspect died from a self inflicted gunshot wound.

Texas Governor Greg Abbott says the shooting at First Baptist Church is the deadliest mass shooting in Texas' history.

During the news conference, officials said the victims of the church shooting ranged in age from 5 to 72.

The church's pastor, Frank Pomeroy, told ABC his 14-year-old daughter is among the dead. He added she "was one very beautiful, special child."

 A person who said she works at a gas station across the street from the church told ABC News she heard rapid gunfire at around 11:15 a.m., leading congregants from the church as well as customers at the station to run inside for cover.

“We heard several shots and we all started running inside the store,” she said.

“It lasted about 15 seconds. I yelled, ‘Get down! Get inside!’ and we all went into hiding,” said the woman, who said she is 49 but declined to give her name.

She said the gas station locked its doors. "We have not reopened,” she said.

She then said that within minutes of the gunfire, emergency personnel had arrived at the scene.

“There were officers that were checking the wounded in here and they were asking them questions,” she said.

Connally Memorial Center in nearby Floresville told ABC News it has received six people from the shooting.

ABC News learned ATF and the FBI assisted law enforcement. Outside the church, police formed a perimeter and flooded the grounds with emergency and police vehicles, according to KSAT.

A small group of people were seen standing together, holding hands as tears overtook an attempt to pray, a KSAT reporter said.


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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement, "The thoughts and prayers of all Texans are with the people of Sutherland Springs as tragic reports come out of First Baptist Church."

"Please join Angela and me as we pray for those impacted by this horrific shooting,” Paxton said.

Just after 3 p.m. Sunday, President Trump tweeted that he is monitoring Texas church shooting from Japan.

 

 

 

 

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