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From Texas: A Look At Law Enforcement Response To Deadly Sutherland Springs Shooting

Nov 5, 2017
Originally published on November 5, 2017 9:32 pm
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NOEL KING, HOST:

We are turning back now to that mass shooting in Texas. There have been multiple casualties reported after a gunman opened fire at a church in the small town of Sutherland Springs, Texas. We're still trying to figure out as much as we can. Joining us now on the phone is Kelsey Bradshaw. She's a reporter with the San Antonio Express-News. She's been covering the story today. Hi, Kelsey.

KELSEY BRADSHAW: Hi there.

KING: Kelsey, what do we know about what happened this morning at the church?

BRADSHAW: So what we do know is that a man came into the church at some point this morning, and at least 28 people are dead. We're not sure if the 28 number is 27 victims plus the shooter because he's deceased now. And he came in - there's a whole bunch of victims. And there's a whole lot of people wounded that have been taken to hospitals in San Antonio and smaller hospitals around the area of Sutherland Springs. At least 20 people are wounded, and there's expected to be more people wounded. And it's a pretty small congregation. It's a pretty small town as well. The number of people who are injured and killed make up for about 10 percent of the entire town population.

KING: Oh, wow. Kelsey, have you spoken to anyone from Sutherland Springs?

BRADSHAW: So the only people I've been able to get in touch with have been, like, Wilson County commissioner officials. Other than that, I haven't been able to talk to any of the victims. But we do know that there have been some younger victims - some younger children who were shot. And we just put up a new story about the Associated Press is reporting that the pastor's teenage daughter was killed as well.

KING: Oh, my goodness.

BRADSHAW: She was 14.

KING: 14 years old?

BRADSHAW: Yeah.

KING: Kelsey, do I have right that you're based in San Antonio, which is the nearest big city to Sutherland Springs?

BRADSHAW: Right, yes. So San Antonio is about 35 miles away from Sutherland Springs, which is southeast of San Antonio.

KING: Did you know anything about the town before today?

BRADSHAW: To be honest with you, I did not. I'm actually from Dallas. And so when I saw Sutherland Springs - or, you know, when any type of horrendous incident like this happens in Texas, I always look up to see if it's nearby, and it ended up being our next-door neighbor. So they've been helicoptering people to San Antonio, and a couple of our hospitals have been taking in victims.

KING: Both the hospitals are taking victims and, as I understand it, the law enforcement from San Antonio is also helping with the response. Do we have that right?

BRADSHAW: Right. So we were able to confirm with one of our sources that SAPD is sending a K-9 unit to the home.

KING: The San Antonio Police Department?

BRADSHAW: Right.

KING: OK.

BRADSHAW: They're sending a K-9 unit out there to look for explosive devices. We're trying to piece together some other stuff, but we haven't been able to confirm anything.

KING: And if they're sending a shooter to his home, does that mean the police know who the shooter is?

BRADSHAW: We're assuming so, yes. We just have not been able to get a name. They're about to do a press conference, where I'm assuming they'll hopefully give us some more info on who this person was. But we don't know yet.

KING: Yeah, we're watching that on our end as well. Kelsey, before I let you go, do you have any sense on where this investigation goes from here?

BRADSHAW: I do not. You know, with these mass shootings, they all kind of - some of them can be explained, and other ones, like this Las Vegas shooting, we still have no idea why that man did what he did. So it's just kind of a wait-and-see sort of situation.

KING: Kelsey Bradshaw is with the San Antonio Express-News. Kelsey, thank you so much.

BRADSHAW: Thank you. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright NPR.