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Texas Church Gunman Escaped From Mental Health Facility in 2012

Image: Texas Church Gunman Escaped From Mental Health Facility in 2012

By    |   Tuesday, 07 Nov 2017 08:54 PM

The gunman who police say shot and killed 26 people and wounded 20 in a Texas church over the weekend was able to escape from a mental health facility in 2012, months after beating his then wife and her young son.

Houston-based KPRC reported Tuesday that Devin Kelley's violent history also includes an escape from Peak Behavioral Health Services in Santa Teresa, New Mexico.

Police officers picked him up after his escape at an El Paso bus station, and a witness told them he had "suffered from mental disorders and had plans to run from Peak Behavioral Health Services."

Kelley, the witness said, "was a danger to himself and others as he had already been caught sneaking firearms onto Holloman Air Force base" and "was attempting to carry out death threats" against his superiors in the military.

Kelley served in the Air Force from 2009-2014. He was convicted in 2012 after police said he physically abused his wife and stepson. After serving a 12-month sentence, he was given a bad conduct discharge from the Air Force.

The Air Force has come under fire for not reporting Kelley's violent history, including his conviction, to federal authorities. Experts say that lapse led to Kelley's ability to purchase firearms in recent years.

Police said Kelley walked into the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Sunday morning and shot nearly everyone in attendance. He was then shot by a local who heard the gunfire and was pursued in his car before he shot and killed himself.

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The gunman who police say shot and killed 26 people and wounded 20 in a Texas church over the weekend was able to escape from a mental health facility in 2012, months after beating his then wife and her young son.
texas.church, shooting, mental hospital
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2017-54-07
Tuesday, 07 Nov 2017 08:54 PM
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