The shooting wasn’t even done… and already the internet was abuzz with politicians and celebrities demanding gun control. Now the controversy rages while the blood dries… and while families are left mourning, police officers are trying to figure out exactly what happened.
Here’s what we know so far.
At least five people were shot dead. Another 21 were injured, including three police officers, according to Odessa Police Chief Michael.
UMC has confirmed a 17 month old is on the way to Lubbock after being shot in the face. https://t.co/M47lhELEIv
— NewsWest9 (@newswest9) August 31, 2019
Within minutes, a Go Fund Me campaign was launched for that child from someone who says that they “know the family”. The campaign raised more than $56,000 in an hour.
— Michael Barthel (@RealMiBaWi) September 1, 2019
In that campaign, the author posts:
From the mother of Anderson:
We are on a very long drive to Lubbock. Anderson is a live and that is a prayer answered bigger than I’ve ever had to pray. Her vitals are good. She is being flown to Lubbock while we drive. Not getting to fly with her is beyond painful. Anderson is 17 months old, has shrapnel in her right chest, which thank God is superficial. She has a hole through her bottom lip and tongue and her front teeth were knocked out. She is alive. When others today are not alive. I ask you to continue praying for our hearts as we experience this, pray for complete healing of Anderson, pray for every other family in our same situation, or worse, today and pray for the shooters. Pray that whatever is causing them to do this will be defeated by God and they will stop shooting. The last we heard there are three shooters, over 20 shot, 4 or more dead.
i am not the baby’s mom, but I know the family!
Please help me by raising money for this sweet sweet baby girl who is so little and doesn’t realize what is happening. They will have a lot of expensive they are going to have to pay for.
Nobody has confirmed the authenticity of the campaign, and it’s worth noting that after tragedies we often see fake campaigns pop up to prey on emotions of generous people.
The suspect was driving a “hijacked mail truck” and was ultimately shot and killed by police at the Cinergy movie theater in Odessa, Texas.
The whole incident started around 4:17 p.m. Saturday in neighboring Texas cities of Midland and Odessa when the suspect fled a traffic stop by a Texas Department of Public Safety officer. He shot the officer, hijacked a U.S. Postal Service van and fired at random motorists along Interstate 20.
These pictures from CNN show bullet holes in vehicles following two active shooter situations in Odessa and Midland, Texas pic.twitter.com/FnTSRDnojd
— Lindsey Mastis (@LindseyMastis) August 31, 2019
Suspect fled a traffic stop, shooting at the officer and random motorists on I-20 as he fled.
At least five people aside from the shooter were killed, and 21 injured, police say
The shooter so far has been identified only as a white male in his mid 30s.
Crazy how life change in a moments notice. Today there was an active shooter in the Odessa Cinergy. Thankfully the Lord was with us and were able to get out safely. But for those who weren’t so lucky my thoughts and prayer are with y’all and the families. pic.twitter.com/X8OioQMM7i
— Tony Cuellar (@Mr_Cuellar) September 1, 2019
Witness video from the theater shows police confronting the suspect outside of the theater and engaging in a shootout.
VIDEO: "I'm hit, I'm hit! Shots fired, shots fired!" Dispatch audio captures gun battle between police and Odessa/Midland shooter pic.twitter.com/95aGYek7Ub
— Matthew Keys (@MatthewKeysLive) September 1, 2019
We’re now learning more about the injured victims. One of them was a 17-month-old toddler, officials said.
According to Medical Center Hospital in Odessa, 13 victims related to the shooting were admitted. That comes directly from Russel Tippin, CEO Medical Center Health System, at a press conference.
BREAKING: Eyewitness video shows police surrounding mailvan in Odessa TX. Zack Lindsey, who was 30yrds away, says “the shooter had been speeding towards us shooting out of the window at the police. He then ran into another vehicle, & got rushed by police when his vehicle stopped” pic.twitter.com/ILzsbFgaTw
— David Begnaud (@DavidBegnaud) September 1, 2019
Of those 13, one is deceased, seven are in critical condition, two are in serious condition, two have been treated and released, and one is a child under the age of two who has been transferred to a pediatric facility.
According to Tippin, the hospital has a staging area for families of the victims, and remains on lockdown for the security of patients and staff.
“Right now the hospital is stable, it’s secure,” he said.
He added it’s a time for unity.
“Everyone hearing the sound of my voice, you need to grab on to your loved ones and hold them tight and pray for this town and the victims,” Tippin said.
Police officials say the DPS officer who was shot and other law enforcement officers who were injured are both expected to survive.
Another witness video shows people rushing out of the movie theater as police armed with rifles rush inside.
‘There’s a shooter!’ one of the fleeing moviegoers shouts.
Prayers for Odessa/Midland. This is so crazy, I’ve always felt so safe here. pic.twitter.com/x3ZDGCjeS3
— Margie Galindo (@Margiee97) August 31, 2019
At first, police reported there could be more than one shooter. They now believe it was only one.
The two vehicles in question were described as a gold or white small Toyota truck and a hijacked USPS Postal Van. Police now say the suspect switched vehicles at some point and hijacked the postal van.
“Once this individual was taken out of the picture, there have been no more victims,” Gerke said.
The chaos resulted in reports of shootings along I-20, along Loop 250 in Midland, and at a Home Depot in Odessa.
‘Please stay away from these areas and stay indoors,’ the Midland Police Department said in a statement.
‘For the safety of the public and law enforcement please stay away from the area and stay in your homes. We will update with more information as soon as possible,’ the Midland department said.
According to the Dallas Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, ATF agents are responding to assist in the investigation.
President Donald Trump said he has been briefed on the shooting and the White House is monitoring the situation.
‘Just briefed by Attorney General Barr about the shootings in Texas. FBI and Law Enforcement is fully engaged,’ Trump wrote in a tweet.
Vice President Mike Pence weighed in that the administration ‘remain absolutely determined’ to work with leaders in both parties in Congress to take such steps ‘so we can address and confront this scourge of mass atrocities in our country.’
Pence said Trump is ‘fully engaged’ and closely monitoring the investigation, and added, ‘Our hearts go out to all the victims, the families and loved ones.’
He also expressed gratitude to law enforcement ‘for their swift, courageous response.’
According to the vice president, Trump has deployed the federal government in response to the shootings and said that the FBI is already assisting local law enforcement.
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In a separate incident Friday, A woman was arrested after police say she tried to set off a firebomb in the lobby of a U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office in Florida.
It’s just the latest in an ongoing string of attacks against Homeland Security facilities.
Here’s what happened.
Police say the woman – who they have not yet publicly identified – walked into the office in Oakland Park, which is about 33 miles north of Miami.
She then hurled a bottle of gasoline with a lit fuse.
Fortunately for the staff, the fuse detached from the bottle before it was able to ignite. No major injuries were reported.
Citizenship and Immigration Services is a Homeland Security agency.
The organization processes legal immigration cases and is overseen by Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli, who weighed in on Twitter late Friday night.
(1/2) “Today’s attempted attack on one of our USCIS facilities using a Molotov cocktail is another example of the use of violence in place of debate by those who oppose the proper application of our immigration laws… https://t.co/5o9AehyLo1
— USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli (@USCISCuccinelli) August 31, 2019
“Today’s attempted attack on one of our USCIS facilities using a Molotov cocktail is another example of the use of violence in place of debate by those who oppose the proper application of our immigration laws,” Cuccinelli said on Twitter, in a message sharing a link to The Associated Press report.
Cuccinelli is a staunch supporter of President Trump’s hardline stance on immigration. He has been tasked with carrying out recent policy changes. Those include the so-called “public charge” rule. It’s something that could deny green cards to immigrants who use Medicaid, food stamps, housing vouchers or other forms of public assistance.
He’s not happy about yet another attack.
(2/2) … This is the 2d attack on a DHS facility in 2 months using a Molotov cocktail. Violence has no place in our society. Thankfully, no one was hurt today. We’re grateful to our security guards & the law enforcement officers of FPS who apprehended and arrested the assailant.
— USCIS Acting Director Ken Cuccinelli (@USCISCuccinelli) August 31, 2019
“This is the 2d attack on a DHS facility in 2 months using a Molotov cocktail. Violence has no place in our society. Thankfully, no one was hurt today. We’re grateful to our security guards & the law enforcement officers of FPS who apprehended and arrested the assailant.”
In Friday’s incident, it wasn’t clear what caused the woman to throw the bottle.
Security officers handcuffed her and held onto her until she could be arrested by Federal Protective Service officers.
Police say they do not believe this attempted attack was related to other incidents. They have not yet released her name or what criminal charges she faced. The office was closed for the rest of the day.
There have been a number of recent threats and attacks on those who work for another Homeland Security agency — Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
Back in July, a 69-year-old man opened fire at an ICE center in Tacoma, Washington where thousands of migrants were housed.
That man – who wrote a manifesto saying he identified with the far-left group Antifa – also set a vehicle on fire and tried to light propane tanks in an attempt to burn the facility to the ground. He was interrupted when he was shot and killed by police.
Those who work for DHS and ICE have faced everything from protesters menacing their children and shots being fired at their offices, to a rising tide of anti-ICE rhetoric from the left fueled by congressional Democrats, media voices and presidential hopefuls.
Imagine having your children threatened just because you’re trying to enforce the laws of the United States. That’s exactly what’s starting to happen across the country.
One such threat came just one day before gunmen fired shots into local ICE offices and GEO Group offices in San Antonio, Texas in what the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) is describing as a “targeted attack.”
The FBI said that no one was injured, but another building used by ICE was also fired on.
Just a day ahead of that ahead, protesters with multiple activist groups shouted threats at workers and former employees of the GEO Group, a private contractor used by ICE for facility and detention space.
Those “activist” groups included Never Again Action, Miramar Circle of Protection Friends of Miami-Dade Detainees, Food Not Bombs Fort Lauderdale, Students Working for Equal Rights, and the Black Lives Matter Alliance of Broward County.
According to a report by Breitbart:
A group of open borders activists threatened employees of a government contractor in Florida that provides facility space for the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agency to detain border crossers and immigrants not in the country legally the day before a shooting at the contractor’s offices in Texas.
A protester specifically threatened GEO Group’s former general counsel John Bulfin, shouting the locations and addresses of where his children live in the United States.
“We know where all your children live throughout the country … John Bulfin you have kids in [bleeped out], you have kids in [bleeped out],” the protester shouted. “We know everything about you and you won’t just be seeing us here.”
They went on to threaten his home. His pets.
“We know where you sleep at night,” another protester shouted. “We know what kind of dog food you buy your dogs.”
His place of worship.
“We’re not actually joking,” the protester said before shouting the location of where Bulfin lives. “John Bulfin you go to [bleeped out], you go to church on [bleeped out], you live on [bleeped out the] road. We are not joking.”
I wonder if Professor Adam Malka will be calling for these groups to be called domestic terrorists as he did in calling for only white, male mass-murderers to be labeled as such.
The Breitbart report continues:
“These shootings were cowardly, brazen, violent acts, absolutely without justification and a threat to our entire community,” San Antonio FBI Chief Christopher Combs told KSAT 12. “An attempt to attack federal employees is a federal crime with serious consequences … I don’t think there is a question that they knew which floor the ICE office is on.” said Combs during a press conference Tuesday afternoon at the scene, adding that all the rounds that were recovered were found on the floor that ICE occupies.”
“To fire indiscriminately into any building is not an act of a protest but an act of violence,” Combs said.
“The safety of our employees is our top priority and we will do whatever it takes to ensure that their safety and their security remains our top priority,” GEO Group VP of of Corporate Relations Pablo Paez said. He went on:
“These are politically motivated attacks. We have been a services provider to the federal government for over 30 years. The fact is that the services we provide in our facilities today are in no way different than the high quality, professional services under the same standards that we provided for eight years under President Obama’s administration. So where was the outrage then?”
This violence directed at ICE was not new, nor was it an isolated incident. Recent protests are taking place within weeks of a domestic terror attack on an ICE facility and a protest at another that led to the American flag being taken down and replaced with a Mexican flag.
Not only are civilian protestors causing issues, but they seem to be taking their lead from elected officials.
In the latest of what is seemingly becoming commonplace, an activist group was protesting ICE. This time they were blocking the entrances and exits to the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement headquarters in Washington, D.C. Federal authorities arrested at least 11 Jewish activists and immigration rights activists.
There is a movement to abolish ICE over the condition of migrants detained in border facilities, as well as family separations.
The group called Never Again Action marched from the National Mall in Washington D.C. to the agency building where they linked arms and stood or sat down in front of entrance and exit doors. ICE employees could be seen trying to get into the building without success.
The group has held #ShutDownICE demonstrations in other cities.
Some protestors carried a banner aimed at House Speaker Nancy Pelosi that read, “Pelosi, never again is now.” Pelosi has come under attack by progressives after she supported $4.6 billion bill to send aid to the U.S.-Mexico border after pushing for more protections for migrants.
Other signs compared ICE to the Ku Klux Klan and Nazis. Protestors also blocked rush hour traffic around the agency headquarters.
Critics of the agency have called for its dissolution and have chastised immigration officials over the treatment of migrants, some of whom have said they go days or weeks without showers and are given inadequate food and water.
This stemming from staged photo-ops by Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez who has famously “toured” the border, making numerous false accusations and characterizations against the federal agency collectively as well against a number of its individual agents.
She claimed that CBP agents are forcing migrants to drink out of toilets and live under other extreme conditions, all while the officers sit back and laugh.
“I see why CBP officers were being so physically & sexually threatening towards me,” the congresswoman tweeted. “Officers were keeping women in cells with no water & had told them to drink out of the toilets,” she said. “This was them on their GOOD behavior in front of members of Congress. Now I’ve seen the inside of these facilities,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted. “It’s not just the kids. It’s everyone. People drinking out of toilets, officers laughing in front of members Congress.” She added, “I brought it up to their superiors. They said, ‘officers are under stress & act out sometimes.’ No accountability.”
According to The Washington Examiner’s Anna Giaritelli, the freshman Democrat didn’t actually tour the facility.
In fact, according to the report, she apparently refused to and instead chose to scream at federal law enforcement officers “in a threatening manner” Monday while visiting the U.S.-Mexico border.
It is interesting that she would use the concept of accountability. AOC was visiting, in spite of CBP agents making what she called “threats to her life on social media.”
She said a “secret Facebook group” of 9,500 officers discussed making a GoFundMe to harm her and the other Dems during their visit. “This isn’t about ’a few bad eggs,’” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted early Monday afternoon. “This is a violent culture.”
The Congresswoman made multiple accusations of criminal wrongdoing against CBP agents on Monday. As always, no one is above the law, and if officers and agents are guilty of the things she claims, they must be held accountable.
However, law enforcement officers, at the state, local and federal levels are consummate professionals. It would be difficult to believe that they are guilty of the things she claims.
Who would act so brazenly in front of a Congressional delegation? Certainly not professional officers.
But lest we forget, other elected officials are going so far as to actively eliminate ICE activity in their cities and states.
We have governors, mayors and even sheriffs and police chiefs who are refusing to uphold the law.
It’s one thing to protest. It’s another to obstruct justice. And that’s exactly what people in Chicago were looking to do this weekend.
Dozens of volunteers seeking to disrupt federal deportation raids fanned out across Albany Park recently.
“The main thing we want to achieve is extreme delay,” said Anthony Joel Quezada, who works for Chicago Alderman Carlos Ramirez-Rosa.
You heard that right – actual Chicago city employees have joined pro-illegal immigration supporters in protesting and interfering with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents as they carry out deportation arrests in several major cities.
“Armed with cell phone cameras and teamed in pairs of two, the volunteers set out on foot and on bike to look for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) raids or signs of an impending raid, such as unmarked law enforcement vehicles staging outside a home. As of early Sunday afternoon, there was no evidence the highly anticipated raids had begun.”
Let’s back up a few notches and put this in perspective. United States citizens, and more importantly, employees of cities, are seeking to interfere with and obstruct justice by contacting ICE agents as they carry out deportation raids. This is the latest in a long line of sanctuary city actions aimed at curbing immigration enforcement.
It is most definitely time to start arresting people.
Let’s take this a step further. I would like to introduce you to 18 U.S. Code§ 2384.What is this code? It is called seditious conspiracy. The code reads:
If two or more persons in any State or Territory, or in any place subject to the jurisdiction of the United States, conspire to overthrow, put down, or to destroy by force the Government of the United States, or to levy war against them, or to oppose by force the authority thereof, or by force to prevent, hinder, or delay the execution of any law of the United States, or by force to seize, take, or possess any property of the United States contrary to the authority thereof, they shall each be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than twenty years, or both.
Here are just a few of the people who have already, by definition, committed seditious conspiracy. Could we potentially see these individuals charged?
- San Francisco Mayor London Breed
- Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot
- Denver Mayor Michael Hancock
- Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti
- Los Angeles Police Chief Michel Moore
- Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez
- Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo
Many local, state, and federal politicians and city leaders have boldly announced that they will interfere with enforcement efforts, and the extreme of these efforts include statements by several of our Congressional members giving tips on how to avoid being departed and even giving pointers on how to deal with ICE and avoid capture.
The rhetorical question begs to be answered – if police officers, deputies, federal agents, and other law enforcement personnel are vilified when doing their jobs, and flogged in the proverbial public square at the slightest deviation from their sworn oaths, why are politicians allowed to aid those breaking federal law – to the point of giving evasion instructions or physically interfering with enforcement officers?