U.S. President Donald Trump, commenting on a mass shooting in Texas, said on Monday “you cannot put into words the pain and grief we all feel” for the victims. Trump was speaking in Tokyo on the second day of a 12-day Asian swing expected to be dominated by North Korea and trade. But the visit was overshadowed by the shooting in southeast Texas, where a gunman entered a small church and opened fire, killing at least 26 worshipers and wounding 20 others. “Americans do what we do best, we pull together,” Trump said at the start of a meeting with business leaders. “We stand strong, ph so strong.” He added federal authorities would help Texas in the aftermath of the shooting and that all of America was praying to God.
A man opened fire inside of a church in a small South Texas community on Sunday, killing 26 people and wounding about 20 others in the deadliest mass shooting in the state’s history, the governor said. Officials didn’t identify the attacker during a news conference Sunday night, but two other officials – one a US official and one in law enforcement – who were briefed on the investigation identified him as Devin Kelley. They spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss the investigation. The U.S. official said Kelley lived in a San Antonio suburb and doesn’t appear to be linked to organized terrorist groups. The official said investigators are looking at social media posts Kelley may have made in the days before Sunday’s attack, including one that appeared to show an AR-15 semiautomatic weapon.
A Department of Public Safety official said at the news conference that investigators weren’t ready to discuss a possible motive for the attack. He said the dead ranged in age from 5 to 72 years old. Twenty-three were found dead in the church, two were found outside and one died after being taken to a hospital.
Federal law enforcement swarmed the small community 30 miles southeast of San Antonio after the attack to offer assistance, including ATF investigators and members of the FBI’s evidence collection team. Among those killed was the 14-year-old daughter of the church’s pastor, Frank Pomeroy, and his wife, Sherri. Sherri Pomeroy wrote in a text message to the AP that she and her husband were out of town in two different states when the attack occurred.