Texas gunman ID’d; US Postal Service employee among slain

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Authorities say the seven people killed in a shooting rampage in West Texas range in age from 15 to 57

MIDLAND, Texas (AP) – The Latest on a shooting in West Texas (all times local):

2:40 p.m.

The U.S. Postal Service says a 29-year-old employee was among the seven people killed in a shooting rampage in West Texas.

Postal Service officials said in a statement that letter carrier Mary Granados was among those killed Saturday by a lone gunman who went on a more than 10-mile rampage. Authorities say he hijacked her mail carrier truck and fired at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland. He shot more than 20 people before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.

Postal officials say Granados was alone in the postal vehicle. They say the Postal Service’s law enforcement arm is working closely with other agencies in the investigation.

Odessa police identified the gunman as 36-year-old Seth Aaron Ator, of Odessa.


2:30 p.m.

Odessa police say the man who killed seven people in West Texas has been identified as Seth Aaron Ator.

Police posted the update on Facebook. They say he is a 36-year-old from Odessa. They didn’t provide any additional info.

State police attempted to stop Ator on Saturday for a traffic violation, when he opened fire. They say he went on more than 10-mile shooting rampage, hijacking a mail carrier truck and firing at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland.

He shot more than 20 people before being killed by officers outside a movie theater. The dead ranged in age from 15 to 57 years old.


1 p.m.

Authorities say a gunman who killed seven people during a rampage in West Texas used an “AR-type weapon” while opening fire at random as he was chased by police.

FBI agent Christopher Combs said Sunday that federal investigators believe the gunman had no connection to terrorism. Authorities say they’ve identified the gunman but refused to publicly say his name at a news conference.

Police eventually killed the shooter. Authorities told reporters that the gunman had a criminal record but did not elaborate.

The shooting began with Texas state troopers pulling over a driver for failing to signal a left turn. One trooper was shot, but authorities say he’s expected to recover.

Police say those killed in Saturday’s attack were between the ages of 15 and 57 years old. Authorities say they’re processing more than 15 scenes in the investigation.


12:35 p.m.

Authorities say the seven people killed in a shooting rampage in West Texas range in age from 15 to 57.

Odessa Police Chief Michael Gerke said at a news conference Sunday that authorities have no definitive answers yet about a motive in Saturday’s shooting.

It began with Texas state troopers pulling over a driver for failing to signal a left turn. Police say the driver went on a more than 10-mile shooting rampage, hijacking a mail carrier truck and firing at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland. He shot more than 20 people before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.

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12:15 p.m.

The medical director of an emergency care center says he witnessed part of a shooting rampage in West Texas that left seven people dead before police killed the gunman.

Dr. Nathaniel Ott says he heard shots around 3 p.m. Saturday while at work in Odessa. He rushed outside to find a woman in the driver’s seat of an SUV bleeding from a gunshot wound in the arm. Ott says a paramedic put a tourniquet on the woman’s arm and he ran back inside to get a bag of fluids and an IV.

They then loaded the woman into a police cruiser to be driven to a nearby trauma center. He doesn’t know how she’s doing now.

Ott says that as they were working, the shooter drove back by the intersection, followed by police. He says the gunman drove within 30 feet of him. He says of the shooter: “He was just everywhere.”


11:30 a.m.

A number of looser gun restrictions are taking effect in Texas as authorities investigate why a man fled a traffic stop and went on a shooting rampage, leaving at least seven people dead. Police eventually killed the shooter.

New laws easing firearm restrictions in Texas churches and increasing the number of armed teachers took effect Sunday. The measures were signed by Republican Gov. Greg Abbott this year following a legislative session that was applauded by the National Rifle Association.

Texas expanded gun rights following a 2017 mass shooting at a church that left more than two dozen dead and a 2018 mass shooting at high school that left 10 dead.

Abbott was scheduled to visit Odessa on Sunday. He met twice with lawmakers this past week in wake of a mass shooting Aug. 3 in the Texas border city of El Paso that left 22 dead. Abbott has remained noncommittal about new gun laws.


10:40 a.m.

President Donald Trump is praising law enforcement in West Texas after police say at least seven people were killed when a gunman randomly opened fire on people after fleeing a traffic stop. Police eventually killed the shooter.

Trump on Sunday called the shooting rampage “A very tough and sad situation!” in a tweet. It came just weeks after another Texas mass shooting at Walmart in El Paso that left 22 people dead.

The shootings have reignited a debate in the U.S. over gun control.

Democratic presidential contenders are intensifying their criticism of Trump and Republicans. Former Texas Congressman Beto O’Rourke condemned expressions of “thoughts and prayers” as insufficient following Saturday’s shooting in his home state.


9:15 a.m.

Odessa police say the death toll in a West Texas shooting rampage is now seven after a man stopped by state troopers opened fire and fled, shooting people at random. Police later shot the gunman.

Odessa police spokesman Steve LeSueur said Sunday that at least one person remains in “life-threatening” condition. Authorities have said the gunman shot more than 20 people before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.

Police say the shooter was a white man in his 30s but have not released a name or possible motive.

The shooter hijacked a mail carrier truck on Saturday afternoon and fired at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland.

Odessa police had scheduled a news conference for noon.


9 a.m.

The acting U.S. homeland security secretary calls a mass shooting in West Texas that left at least five people dead “extraordinarily concerning” and describes it and other recent mass shootings as a “homeland security threat.”

Kevin McAleenan told ABC’s “This Week” that Homeland Security Department officials will be “following up aggressively” on the West Teas shooting but didn’t want to jump to any conclusions about the causes or motive.

It began with Texas state troopers pulling over a driver for failing to signal a left turn. Police say the driver went on a more than 10-mile shooting rampage Saturday afternoon, hijacking a mail carrier truck and firing at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland. He shot more than 20 people before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.

When asked if recent mass shootings should be considered a homeland security threat, McAleenan said: “They are absolutely a homeland security threat.”


1 a.m.

At least five people are dead in West Texas after a man stopped by state troopers for failing to signal a left turn opened fire and fled. Authorities say the gunman shot more than 20 people as he drove before being killed by officers outside a movie theater.

Police in Odessa plan a Sunday morning news conference to update the investigation into the chaotic rampage during which the suspect hijacked a mail carrier truck and fired at random as he drove in the area of Odessa and Midland.

The two cities are in the heart of Texas oil country, more than 300 miles (483 kilometers) west of Dallas.

Police have only identified the gunman as a man in his 30s and have not offered a motive.

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