At least 26 people have been killed and many injured in the shooting at a Baptist church in a remote town in the US state of Texas today.
The shooting took place at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, a small community about 50 kilometers southeast of San Antonio, at about 11:20 am local time, media reports said. They said the shooter walked into the church shortly before noon - at a morning service that witnesses said was normally attended by some 50 people - and opened fire. As the suspected shooter left the church, local residents used their own rifles to engage him.
A two-year-old was among the wounded, a regional director with the Department of Public Safety said, with other victims ranging in age from 5 to 72 years. According to ABC News, this was the worst mass shooting in state's history.
There were "multiple fatalities and multiple wounded," according to Wilson County Commissioner Albert Gamez Jr., NBC News reported. A spokeswoman for Connally Memorial Medical Center in nearby Floresville told Fox News that "we have accepted a number of patients from the shooting." She gave no number. Helicopters and emergency personnel were arriving at the scene, and agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives were heading to the scene, the bureau said.
The shooter, who used a .223 rifle and additional firearms, has been identified as 26-year-old Devin Patrick Kelley. Local authorities have not said what may have motivated the suspected shooter, who was later found dead in his vehicle.
The shooting comes just over a month after a gunman in Las Vegas, firing down from a hotel room, killed 58 people and wounded hundreds. And it came just over two years after a white supremacist, Dylann Roof, entered a historically black church in Charleston, South Carolina, and shot nine people to death. (PTI)
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