Daily Caller

Odessa Shooter Previously Failed A Gun Background Check

Audrey Conklin on September 3, 2019

The man who killed seven people and wounded 25 others during a Saturday shooting rampage in Texas previously failed a gun background check, Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said Monday.

The shooting spanned 10 miles between Midland, Texas, and Odessa, Texas, killing both motorists and passersby ranging from 15 to 57 years old before the shooter was shot dead by police outside a movie theater.

“Not only did the Odessa gunman have a criminal history … he also previously failed a gun purchase background check in Texas … [and] he didn’t go [through] a background check for the gun he used in Odessa. We must keep guns out of criminals’ hands,” Abbott, a Republican, tweeted Monday.

Authorities arrested the shooter in 2001 for a misdemeanor offense that would not have ruined his chances of legally purchasing a gun, The Associated Press reported citing online court records.

Law enforcement is unsure how the shooter obtained the AR-style weapon he used Saturday. Odessa Police Chief Michael Gerke also to reporters that “there are no definite answers as to motive or reasons” behind the shooting at this time, The New York Times reported.

The 36-year-old gunman was also reportedly fired from his job at Journey Oilfield Services the morning of the same day he shot and killed seven people.

After the shooter was fired, he and his employer the oil company both made complaints to police, but there were no immediate threats. The shooter then contacted the FBI and mumbled about “some of the atrocities that he felt that he had gone through” over the phone, FBI Special Agent Christopher Combs said according to the AP.

“He was on a long spiral of going down. He didn’t wake up Saturday morning and go into his company, and then it happened. He went to that company in trouble and had probably been in trouble for a while,” Combs said.

The gunman’s neighbor, Rocio Gutierrez, also told the AP the gunman shot rabbits and other animals at night.

“We were afraid of him because you could tell what kind of person he was just by looking at him,” Gutierrez said. “He was not nice. He was not friendly. He was not polite.”

Daily Caller

DCwire features investigative reporting syndicated with permission from the Daily Caller News Foundation.

View Comments

  • JFYI
    Even in the great state of Texas has laws about discharging a firearm within a specified distance from the closest out building. In the communist state of California, you must be 150 yds from the nearest out building(pump house/shed), so you can't shoot legally from your porch in any state. We only have to step off the road to shoot, not across it though, and thanks to the antieverything crowd here, shotguns(3) are the only weapon with ammo limits while hunting, and we never have to use blaze orange, you can hunt in a ghillie suit during riffle season if you want.

  • Gunman was a Lazy Prick was Pised off he hadto Work Saturday got up late reported to jobsite late held up production and got Fired this set his Clock in over drive Yous no the rest of Sad Story

  • What neighborhood did he live in? What kind of neighborhood? Were there many houses close together? Did he have neighbors on each side of him? Behind him? Or,..... is it possible that in Texas, he could have lived on a rural road that happened to have one neighbor just close enough to know that he shot at critters at night? It is possible that there are people who live in areas where houses are not stacked on top of each other and it is perfectly fine to shoot an animal right off your back porch without putting you neighbor across the street in any danger. So there would be no reason to call police. And those police in that jurisdiction just might not be complete fools. And the neighbor could quite possibly be telling the complete truth and not be a few beers short of a six pack. Maybe? It could be quite possible.

  • If this guy was shooting rabbits in a neighborhod I assume various neighbors would have called the police and the police would have taken immediate action. So either the police are complete fools or the neighbor is a liar. Take your pick, but my bet is that the neighbor is a few beers short of a six pack.

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