Man shoots and kills 2 inside a Texas church before parishioners fatally shoot him
2020-01-05 16:15

(CNN)A man shot and killed two people during a church service in White Settlement, Texas, on Sunday morning before two members of the church security team shot and killed him, authorities said.


City Police Chief J.P. Bevering said the shooter entered West Freeway Church of Christ and sat down in the sanctuary, then stood, pulled out a shotgun and shot two parishioners.


"There was a security team inside the church and they eliminated the threat," Bevering said.


Matthew DeSarno, the FBI agent in charge of the Dallas-Fort Worth area, didn't identify the shooter, but said he was "relatively transient with roots to this area" and had been arrested multiple times in different municipalities.

联邦调查局探员Matthew DeSarno负责达拉斯——沃斯堡地区,虽然没有查出射手的真实身份,但他表示该射手“在这里的生活时间相对不长”,曾在各市被捕多次。

The shooter was not on any sort of "watch list," DeSarno said, but investigators will try to determine whether he was driven by any sort of ideology. Authorities said the motive is unknown, and nobody knows yet whether the shooter targeted the victims.


Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick said the incident was over within six seconds thanks to the quick response of the security team members. Recent changes in Texas law allow licensed gun owners to carry firearms into houses of worship.

德州副州长Dan Patrick 表示,多亏安保人员反应敏捷,这次枪击事件才能够在6秒内结束。德州近期修改了法令,允许持照持枪者携带枪支前往教堂礼拜。

"Two of the parishioners who are volunteers on the security force drew their weapons and took out the killer immediately, saving untold number of lives," he said.


The shooter and one of the victims died on the way to the hospital, said Macara Trusty, spokesperson for Medstar Mobile Healthcare. The second victim flatlined, was revived and later died, authorities said.

MedStar Mobile Healthcare发言人玛卡拉‧崔斯第称,射手和其中一名受害者在送往医院途中死亡。官方称,另一名受害者刚开始失去生命体征,被救醒不久后也死亡了。

Authorities have not identified the shooter or victims yet.


Video shows the shooting


A video livestream from the church, seen by CNN, appears to show how the shooting unfolded. The entire incident, from the time the shooter pulled out his gun until he was shot, took six seconds.


Lisa Farmer, the wife of the West Freeway Church of Christ Minister Britt Farmer, was not inside the church at the time of the shooting but said the video shows the inside of the church building.

西部公路基督教堂牧师Britt Farmer的妻子Lisa Farmer事发当时并不在教堂内,但她表示该视频清楚地表明了教堂内的情况。

The video, obtained by CNN affiliate KTVT, shows the shooter seated in a pew toward the rear of the church during the service. The shooter, dressed in dark clothes, approaches someone in the back corner and appears to talk to them. That individual gestures toward the center of the church.


The shooter pulled out a long gun and opened fire on the man before shooting a second man.


It appears that a man, toward the left of the screen, draws a handgun and fires. The shooter falls to the ground immediately. Three muzzle flashes are seen on the video.


The YouTube video has since been made private.


It's legal to carry guns into Texas churches


The two people who returned fire against the shooter were members of the church and part of the church's security team, but were not hired by the church, Regional Director of Texas Department of Public Safety Jeoff Williams told reporters Sunday night.

星期日晚,德州公共安全部区域主管Jeoff Williams向记者透露,用枪还击射手的两人均是教堂信众,同时也是教堂的非雇佣安保人员。

"The citizens who were inside that church undoubtedly saved 242 other parishioners," Williams said.


Texas recently changed its firearms laws in response to the 2017 Sutherland Springs church shooting that left 26 people dead.


Lt. Gov. Patrick said the state now allows licensed handgun owners to legally carry weapons into places of worship. Another law allows churches to develop, train and plan for their own teams to provide security.


'It was so chaotic'


The shooting happened during communion, Lisa Farmer told CNN.

Lisa Farmer告诉CNN,枪杀发生在圣餐仪式时。

"It was so chaotic," she said. "I think all the congregation is being held inside, all being held for questioning."


The church normally has around 280 people attending Sunday services, she said. She didn't identify the congregant who died but described him as a close friend "who would do anything for anybody that he could. Good guy. He's been there for us through thick and thin."


Video of the scene from CNN affiliate KTVT showed several agencies present -- including Fort Worth Police, Fort Worth Fire Department and MedStar EMS. Several people could be seen outside the church, which was roped off with yellow police tape.

CNN分部KTVT提供的视频中出现了几家机构——包括沃斯堡警局、沃斯堡消防部及MedStar EMS。可以看到教堂外的人都被黄色的警用胶带隔开了。

Church to meet Monday night


Britt Farmer, the senior minister, said the church will hold a meeting at 6 p.m. Monday to continue the service that was interrupted by the shooting.

资深牧师Britt Farmer表示,教堂会在星期一晚上6点举行聚会,已完成被枪击打断的礼拜。

"We lost two great men today but it could have been a lot worse," he said at the news conference. "I am thankful our government has given us the opportunity to protect ourselves.


"There is evil in this world," he said. "Today is one sermon I will never preach. It was called 'Leaving a Legacy,' and two men today left a legacy."


Governor offers condolences


The shooting comes more than two years after a gunman opened fire at a church in Sutherland Springs -- a community about 300 miles away from White Settlement -- killing at least 26 people.


Texas Gov. Greg Abbott offered his condolences in the wake of the shooting.


"Our hearts go out to the victims and families of those killed in the evil act of violence that occurred at the West Freeway Church of Christ," he said. "Places of worship are meant to be sacred, and I am grateful for the church members who acted quickly to take down the shooter and help prevent further loss of life."


Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said he was "shocked and saddened" to hear about the shooting.

德州司法部长Ken Paxton表示,对于此枪击案感到十分“震惊和沉痛”。

"As reports come in, please pray for any victims and their families, this congregation, and the law enforcement officials at the scene. My office will assist in any way needed," he said.


CNN's Artemis Moshtaghian contributed to this report.

CNN Artemis Moshtaghian报道

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