At least 20 dead. Suspected gunman arrested. What we know about the El Paso Walmart shooting
Charles Ventura, USA TODAY
A lone gunman opened fire at a busy Walmart in El Paso, Texas, on Saturday, killing at least 20 people and injuring 26 others, authorities said.
Law enforcement officials said they arrested a 21-year-old Dallas-area man in connection to the deadly shooting, where some of the mayhem was posted to social media showing shoppers scrambling for cover and their hands raised.
The shooting comes just days after two people were shot and killed in a Walmart store in Southaven, Mississippi, south of Memphis, and the same week three people were killed at a shooting at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in California.
Here’s what we know about the El Paso shooting right now:
Where did the shooting take place?
During a news conference, Sgt. Robert Gomez said the attack occurred at a Walmart near the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, a Texas city situated at the U.S.-Mexico border which sees thousands of Mexican shoppers on a daily basis.
The first calls came in at 10:39 a.m. MDT, and the first officer arrived six minutes later in what would become a massive response, according to El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen.
The Walmart location, according to Gomez, was “at capacity” during the busy shopping weekend and estimated that up to 3,000 shoppers and about 100 employees were at the store.
‘All I hear is loud gunshots’: Walmart employee describes shooting scene
How many victims are there?
At least 20 people were killed and 26 others were wounded during the shooting, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and El Paso police said, the Associated Press reported.
Citing the investigation and pending next of kin notifications, authorities have not released the victims’ identities, CNN reported.
Late Saturday, the Mexican government said at least three Mexican nationals were killed and six were injured in the mass shooting.
Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador tweeted a video offering his condolences to victims and made note of the close ties the border cities share, including the impact of the shooting on both communities.
The University Medical Center of El Paso received 13 victims, ranging in age from 2 to senior citizens, the hospital said Saturday.
Del Sol Medical Center received 11 victims ages 35 to 82. Two are stable, nine are critical and three of those are in “a life-threatening predicament,” the hospital said.
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What is the latest info on the shooter?
The suspect, identified by two law enforcement sources as Patrick Crusius, 21, of Allen, Texas, surrendered to officers and was being interviewed, police said.
According to records, Crusius graduated high school in 2016. He enrolled in Collin College in the fall of 2017, according to the college, and was enrolled as a student until the spring of 2019.
“We join the governor and all Texans in expressing our heartfelt concern for the victims of the shooting and their loved ones,” the college released a statement on Twitter.
— Collin College (@collincollege) August 3, 2019
El Paso Walmart shooting suspect: Police arrest 21-year-old man from Dallas suburb
Where does the investigation stand?
Authorities were investigating the possibility the shooting was a hate crime, working to confirm whether a racist, anti-immigrant screed posted online shortly beforehand was written by the man arrested in the attack, the Associated Press reported.
El Paso police chief Greg Allen said investigators still need to validate whether a so-called “manifesto” circulating online belongs to Crusius.
In it, the writer expresses concern that an influx of Hispanics into the United States will replace aging white voters, potentially turning Texas blue in upcoming elections and swinging the White House to the Democrats.
Hours after the shooting, authorities blocked streets near a home in Allen associated with the suspect. Officers appeared to speak briefly with a woman who answered the door of the gray stone house and later entered the residence, according to the Associated Press.