cw:-shooting

Virginia man is sentenced for the murders of his father and brother

Zachary Toothman, 21, was sentenced on November 20th, 2017, for the murders of his father, Michael Toothman, 53, and his brother, Matthew Toothman, 17. He shot his mother as well but she survived. The murders occurred on August 7th, 2016. 

Police say that Zachary’s parents were sitting in the living room that morning when they heard popping noises upstairs. When they went up the stairs to investigate they saw Zachary coming down the stairs with his fathers gun in his hands. Michael was a 30 year Veteran of the Chesapeake police department. Zachary shot Michael in the arm, and Michael asked him what he was doing, and told him that he loved him. Zachary beat his dad over the head with the gun and shot him again. He shot and wounded his mother and she was able to get outside and tell a neighbor that Zachary had shot her. Zachary originally tried to say that his mother shot and killed his father and brother, but he eventually admitted that it was him.

Zachary was failing out of college at Virginia Tech, and was placed on academic probation. He didn’t want to go back to school. He told his mother before he shot her that he didn’t want to go back. She told him that he didn’t have to if he didn’t want to, and they could talk about it if he just gave her the gun. He told her it would be easier if she just turned around because it was either her or him. He shot his mother in the head after that conversation. 

Zachary has been sentenced to two life sentences plus 23 years.

bbc.co.uk
At least 27 dead in Texas church shooting

At least 27 people have died after a gunman opened fire at a church in Texas during Sunday services.

The attack happened at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs in Wilson County.

A police commissioner at the scene confirmed that at least 27 people had died. Several others are reported to be injured.

The San Antonio FBI branch said its agents had been deployed, and there was no indication of the gunman’s motive.

The FBI also said that while only one shooter was reported, it was looking into other possibilities.

Local ABC affiliate KSAT 12 reported the gunman entered the church at around 11:30 local time (17:30 GMT). It also said he had been killed in the aftermath.

Photos and video from the scene showed the area taped off by local law enforcement.

A number of helicopters have arrived to transport the wounded, KSAT 12 reporter Max Massey said.

Texas governor Greg Abbott said: “Our prayers are with all who were harmed by this evil act. Our thanks to law enforcement for their response.”

He said more details would be released by the Texas Department of Public Safety shortly.

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Texas church shooter, 26, who killed at least 26 people had been dishonorably discharged from the US Air Force for assaulting his wife and child

Devin Patrick Kelley, a married father, walked into the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, dressed in black, tactical gear with a ballistics belt and an assault rifle, and began shooting, according to local law enforcement sources. The attack only stopped when Kelley was confronted by local hero Stephen Willeford, 55, who shot him through a gap in his body armor as the gunman tried to leave the church. Kelley was reportedly killed by that same brave neighbor following a high speed car chase.

At least 26 people were killed in the shooting, but the death toll is expected to climb. Victims include a two-year-old girl, a pregnant woman and the 14-year-old daughter of the pastor.

#SutherlandSprings

I am Texan, and I have grown up hearing the bullshit “Gun don’t kill people. People kill people”. I get it. You want to protect yourself, but regulations must be set and restrictions must be updated and if a man has the capabilities of killing 27 on his own, clearly laws on not strict enough. To allow this to continue with the logic you have is basically invoking an eventual anarchy.

The most pathetic part?

I hear all the time “well criminals will get them however they mean to if they want it bad enough so let the responsible ones have the right to protect”.

Ah yes, that seems to be helping. If you exist, where the hell are you? Give me GOOD EVIDENCE that this seems to be working. Give me more than one or two times to combat the over 300 mass shootings that could have been prevented by making it more difficult for people to get guns or collect them.

My sister had the nerve to say “oh it’s the end times” and “gun laws can’t stop a black heart”. That is so disgusting, even for me, as a Christian to hear. We don’t know when the end times are coming and you should not use that as an excuse to do nothing.

So, gun laws won’t stop everyone? Yea but it can certainly make it harder. That’s why law exists. No one is under the delusional that this will 100% solve the problem but it will make it harder for those who want to do this.

I am honestly sickened that after all of this, people still want to cling to their guns instead of letting the law do its job and letting the cops they respect so much do theirs.

I’m a college kid, a freshman, currently. My dad’s side of the family are all Republican, and they decided to vote Trump for various reasons that I personally do not agree with. In fact, I don’t agree with many of their ideals. One of those is gun control.

My dad owns a pistol, which he keeps locked up in a safe, along with the ammo he has. My uncle who lives in the same state as us has at least a handgun and a shotgun. And my grandpa currently has a shotgun. My uncle especially goes shooting often with his own children. He invited my dad, and I agreed to go along; mostly just for the experience and to know what it’s like (I do a lot of writing and research like that, but I rarely get to do practical research outside of school).

I didn’t say so at the time, but I hated it. I hated the feeling of kick-back the tiny handgun gave me. I hated feeling that power. I hated hearing it, loud even through the earplugs. And I hated that I was good at aiming with the gun. I hated that, even accidentally, I could kill someone easily with this object in my hands. I did maybe one round and then I stopped. I didn’t try the shotgun. And I couldn’t wait to get out of there.

My uncle and one of his kids in particular love it. They go hunting every year. My grandpa can’t shoot if he wanted to, at this point, and my dad is more of a geek than anything – I don’t think he cares. So why does he have a gun again?

He says it’s for protection. Which is bullshit.

If something was to attack us in our house, the gun would be locked in the safe because it’s (surprise 😱) a dangerous weapon, and he wouldn’t have much of a chance to get it out before the danger does anything. And even if he did, we’re obviously going to call the police. And then when the police arrive, they’re going to see a gun and assume my dad is a threat. The gun, ultimately, will be more of a hindrance than a help.

And it’d be no different in any situation.

In the past two months, we’ve had two mass shootings (perpetrated by white males, by the way, which is an issue for another post), one in Vegas during a concert, and another one in Texas during a Christian Church hour. Both of these states, Nevada and Texas, have few gun control laws. Guns are aplenty in both of these states. So… Why did nobody use guns to save the day? Why not shoot the shooter?

Firstly, you’re likely not trained to do that, like policemen and other government officials have been. So even if you have a gun and it’s loaded and ready to shoot, you’re unlikely to know what you’re gonna do. Secondly, when the trained professionals arrive at a shooting, they’re gonna see you with a gun, and they’re gonna assume you’re part of the threat. The situations are the same. Even if you’re a good guy with a gun, you have a gun, and trained professionals are going to target you. So… Your gun was useless. And it distracted from the real threat. Congratulations, you were worse than useless.

I’ve gotten reports on my phone because my college campus is all about safety, thank goodness, and I can remember that I received at least three reports of shots fired in my area. And we had to avoid the areas. Those that fired shots may not have necessarily been trying to shoot somebody – it may have been an accident – but everyone knows that guns are deadly. There’s a reason why my dad keeps his gun in a safe, hidden away.

So, how do we stop potential mass shootings?

Well, what if I told you that putting increased restrictions on guns may help. And before you go “guns don’t kill people, people kill people,” remember why my dad might keep his gun in a safe. Remember why police will go after you if you have a gun during a public shooting and not the people around you. Guns help people kill more people efficiently; that’s the purpose of many guns at this point. And yeah, if a criminal is determined enough, they could probably find a way to skirt around laws and get a gun. But gun control laws we as a people could establish would make it so much harder for the common criminal to do so. It could easily deter a lot of mass shootings, and would help police determine who the shooter is with less guns among the populace, both during the shooting and possibly after.

What would these gun control laws look like? Well, we could get off our high horse and look at other country’s examples, like those of Britain and Australia. Yeah, they’ve had some mass shootings, but I don’t think they’ve had two mass shootings in under two months. Or even multiple mass shootings in under a decade. There’s a solution here, America. And I grieve for those who have been directly affected by these mass shootings. But my thoughts and prayers go directly into hoping that Congress will act to prevent these shootings from happening so frequently. And there are some things us common people can do. Call your senators and representatives and tell them the solution to this problem. When you vote, make sure the candidate you vote for is against mass shootings and wants to stop them. Hope is good; thoughts and prayers are okay; but action is the only thing that will do anything about this issue. Imagine a world where we didn’t have to give thoughts and prayers every couple of months.

At this point, I don’t understand how gun control wouldn’t help us all.

At least 27 dead in Texas church MASS SHOOTING 

The attack unfolded at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Wilson County, during Sunday service.

A police commissioner at the scene confirmed the death toll, which may rise.

Several others were reportedly injured.

While just one shooter was reported, the FBI said it was looking into other possibilities.

The gunman entered the church at around 11:30 local time (17:30 GMT), according to local reports. It had also been reported that he had been killed in the aftermath.

Deadly mass shooting at Sutherland Springs, Texas, church

A man dressed in black tactical-style gear and armed with an assault rifle opened fire inside a church in a small South Texas community on Sunday, killing 26 people and wounding about 20 others in what the governor called the deadliest mass shooting in the state’s history. The dead ranged in age from 5 to 72 years old.

Authorities didn’t identify the attacker during a news conference Sunday night, but two other officials — one a U.S. official and one in law enforcement — 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 didn’t appear to be linked to organized terrorist groups. Investigators were looking at social media posts Kelley made in the days before Sunday’s attack, including one that appeared to show an AR-15 semiautomatic weapon.

Kelley received a bad-conduct discharge from the Air Force for allegedly assaulting his spouse and child, and was sentenced to 12 months’ confinement after a 2012 court-martial. Kelley served in Logistics Readiness at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico from 2010 until his discharge, Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said.

At the news conference, the attacker was described only as a white man in his 20s who was wearing black tactical gear and a ballistic vest when he pulled into a gas station across from the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, about 30 miles southeast of San Antonio, around 11:20 a.m.

The gunman crossed the street and started firing a Ruger AR rifle at the church, said Freeman Martin, a regional director of the Texas Department of Safety, then continued firing after entering the white wood-frame building, where an 11 a.m. service was scheduled. (AP)

Photos: ‘UNENDING HORROR’: Newspapers cover massacre in Sutherland Springs »

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Two Texas State Troopers walk past the church while investigators work at the scene of a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Photo: Larry W. Smith/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

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A law enforcement official stands watch outside the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, the scene of a mass shooting, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Eric Gay/AP)

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People attend a vigil near where a mass shooting took place at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Photo: Larry W. Smith/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

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Mourners participate in a candlelight vigil for the victims of a fatal shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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Law enforcement officials work at the scene of a shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Eric Gay/AP)

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Community members come together for a candlelight vigil for the victims of a deadly church shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Laura Skelding/AP)

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Mourners participate in a candlelight vigil held for the victims of a fatal shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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A couple comfort each other at a community center in Sutherland Springs, Texas, near the scene of a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church, Nov. 5, 2017. (Jay Janner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

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Texas Department of Public Safety troopers and emergency workers outside the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Photo: R. Tomas Gonzalez/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

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A man wipes his eyes after a deadly shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

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An evidence marker sits on the road in front of a Texas Department of Public Safety vehicle outside the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Photo: R. Tomas Gonzalez/EPA-EFE/REX/Shutterstock)

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Texas Gov. Greg Abbott, seated right, addresses members of the media about the mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, during a press conference in Stockdale, Texas, on Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

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Carrie Matula hugs a woman who lost her father in a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. Matula said she saw and heard everything as it happened from the gas station where she works just a block away. (Nick Wagner / American-Statesman via AP)

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Members of the FBI Hazardous Evidence Response Team walk behind the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs in response to a fatal shooting, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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A woman prays over a man after a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/American-Statesman via AP)

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Law enforcement officials investigate a mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/American-Statesman via AP)

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Members of the FBI Hazardous Evidence Response Team walk next to the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs in response to a fatal shooting, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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Law enforcement officials work the scene of a fatal shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

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Law enforcement officers gather in front of the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs after a fatal shooting, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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Law enforcement officers man a barricade near the First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs in response to a shooting, Nov. 5, 2017, in Sutherland Springs, Texas. (Darren Abate/AP)

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Emergency personnel respond to a fatal shooting at a Baptist church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Max Massey/ KSAT 12/KSAT via AP)

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Law enforcement officials stand next to a covered body at the scene of a fatal shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017. (Nick Wagner/Austin American-Statesman via AP)

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Police cars are seen in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017, in this picture obtained via social media. (Max Massey/ KSAT 12/via Reuters)

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FBI officials arrive at the site of a mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017, in this picture obtained via social media. (Max Massey/ KSAT 12/via Reuters)

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Police cars are seen at Sutherland Springs, Nov. 5, 2017, in this picture obtained from social media. (Liz Summers/via Reuters)

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The area around a site of a mass shooting is taped off in Sutherland Springs, Texas, Nov. 5, 2017, in this picture obtained via social media. (Max Massey/ KSAT 12/via Reuters)

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A helicopter flies near the site of a mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas, U.S., November 5, 2017, in this picture obtained via social media. (Max Massey/ KSAT 12/via Reuters)

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