Max Massey // Twitter
[UPDATED 7:42PM ET]
President Donald Trump has offered his first official statements on the mass shooting, referring to the mass shooting as an "act of evil."
"This act of evil occurred as the victims and their families were in their place of sacred worship. We cannot put into words the pain and grief we all feel and we cannot begin to imagine the suffering of those who lost the ones they love," Trump said in a news briefing, adding that his "thoughts and prayers" are with the victims.
During his statements, he failed to suggest or mention future plans to take legislative action to reform any policies pertaining to gun control.
Additionally, Trump pledged his administration's "full support to the great state of Texas and all local authorities investigating this horrible crime."
UPDATED 7:00PM ET:
The gunman has officially been identified by police as 26-year-old Devin Kelley
Gov. Greg Abbott confirmed in a news briefing that 26 people were killed in the attack, which was also the state's deadliest mass shooting in history. Over two dozen were injured and the gunman was killed after a brief chase.
According to reports, victims of the shooting ranged in age from 5 to 72 years old.
Original story below:
According to reports, the gunman, whose identity has not yet been released, walked into the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs around 11:30am Sunday morning (Nov. 5) and opened fire, with at least 25 people losing their lives and 27 others sustaining injuries in the gunfire. Reports originally confirmed at least 27 died, but an official number has not yet been released.
According to Guadalupe County Sheriff's Office Spokesman Robert Murphy, the gunman was killed after a brief chase, but it is not yet certain if the shooter killed themselves or if police intervened. The FBI and local authorities are on the scene investigating and have reported that there is no longer an active threat in the community surrounding the church, which is about 40 miles southeast of San Antonio. The shooter was believed to be acting alone and the motive behind the horrific act is not yet known.
One witness, a cashier at a gas station across the street, said she heard about 20 shots being fired in quick succession, with the gunfire taking place as the church service was in session. The church's congregation is reportedly about 50 people, with this mass shooting now the deadliest shooting at a place of worship in modern history.
Donald Trump was quick to tweet about the devastating violence, adding his condolences and that he is "monitoring the situation from Japan."
"The thoughts and prayers of all Texans are with the people of Sutherland Springs as tragic reports come out of First Baptist Church," Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton said in a statement. "Please join Angela and me as we pray for those impacted by this horrific shooting."
Gov. Greg Abbott has also released an official statement, which can be read in full below.
More on this story as it develops.
See some footage from the scene and reactions to the shooting below.
Statement on shooting in Sutherland Springs, TX. pic.twitter.com/ffUbQgYdWD— Gov. Greg Abbott (@GovAbbott) November 5, 2017
This is what appears to be the front of the church, EMS still responding pic.twitter.com/uxjHJlOTcL— Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) November 5, 2017
Families in tears wait to see if their family and friends are safe. Praying for the safety of all those involved. pic.twitter.com/yjzK7lZJ1S— Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) November 5, 2017
Area of the church is now blocked off and taped off. Family and friends still waiting to hear if their loved ones are safe. pic.twitter.com/YsKz78i3Lg— Max Massey (@MaxMasseyTV) November 5, 2017
May God be w/ the people of Sutherland Springs, Texas. The FBI & law enforcement are on the scene. I am monitoring the situation from Japan.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 5, 2017
Another part of the problem is that Repub Party doesn’t view mentally ill heavily armed white guys as dangerous, they view them as voters.— Adam McKay (@GhostPanther) November 5, 2017
I guess this means the shooter wasn’t brown. https://t.co/D9OS4W0Dr3— Reza Aslan (@rezaaslan) November 5, 2017
How many children are supposed to die so random guys can maintain an irrational fantasy that they could be a “good guy with a gun”?— Jennifer Wright (@JenAshleyWright) November 5, 2017
.@nra you are a terrorist organization. you aid, abet, and protect terrorists.— Timothy Simons (@timothycsimons) November 5, 2017
Another USA mass shooting. At a Texas church. America will offer prayers but never gun control.— Matt Frei (@mattfrei) November 5, 2017
Sutherland Springs has a population of less than 1,000. Imagine the impact a mass shooting is going to have on that community.— Peter J. Hasson (@peterjhasson) November 5, 2017
When a plane crashes, air travel becomes exponentially safer bc of the lessons learned. But 1 mass shooting after another...nothing.— Sarah Silverman (@SarahKSilverman) November 5, 2017
Our thoughts are with the families of the 27 people killed in the shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas this morning.— Women's March (@womensmarch) November 5, 2017
You're telling me these people were in a CHURCH -- the EPICENTER of thoughts & prayers -- and they STILL weren't safe from guns?— Megan Amram (@meganamram) November 5, 2017
Mass shootings in the US:— Brandon Pope TV (@BpopeTV) November 5, 2017
1. Breaking news alerts
2. Thoughts and prayers
5. Back to normal lives
Witnesses reports that half of the congregation in Texas shooting are dead (with other half injured).— PeterSweden (@PeterSweden7) November 5, 2017
This is a massacre of a whole church.
Mall— Michael Skolnik (@MichaelSkolnik) November 5, 2017
Middle and High school