US President, Israel PM and Texas Gov. respond to church shooting

The suspect, Devin Patrick Kelley, was discharged dishonorably from USAF in 2014.

November 6, 2017 06:54
2 minute read.
US President, Israel PM and Texas Gov. respond to church shooting

Sutherland Springs Helicopter. (photo credit: REUTERS)


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World leaders spoke out against the violence that left at least 26 people dead at First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas on Monday.

US President Donald Trump posted on Twitter stating that his "administration will provide its full support to the state of Texas."

Texas Governor Greg Abbott held a press conference, in which he said that the tragedy was "the largest mass shooting in Texas history."

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu took to Twitter to convey his condolences in the wake of the tragic shooting, writing both in Hebrew and in English that he was "Horrified by the savagery in Texas. Our hearts are with the victims, their families and the American people."

Deputy Foreign Minister Tzipi Hotovely also responded to the sad report, penning a tweet that read: "Heartbreaking news of the tragic massacre at #Texas Sutherland Springs church. #prayersfortexas"

The man suspected of perpetrating the attack, Devin Patrick Kelley, was discharged dishonorably from USAF in 2014, according to CBS News. Martin Freeman of the Texas Department of Public Safety said at the press conference that he was a "young, white male in his early twenties, wearing all black, tactical-like gear and a ballistic vest."

At least 26 victims were confirmed dead inside the church, and two were shot outside the church. One person died on their way to the hospital. Another 20 victims, ranging in age from 5 to 72 years old, were transported to local hospitals, in various conditions.

After leaving the church, the suspect was pursued by a local resident and there was an exchange of gunfire. The suspect was found dead in his vehicle. It was not clear if the suspect was killed by the local or took his own life. The local was not wounded in the gun battle.

"We are only hours into this investigation which will take quite a long time," said Freeman.

Agents of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the US Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and other law enforcement agencies were either on the scene or traveling there, according to reports.

About 860 people live in the Sutherland Springs area in 2010, according to the US Census.

Joy Bernard and Reuters contributed to this report.

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