Sep 2, 2019

In photos: Odessa vigil held for West Texas mass shooting victims

Katelyn Cooper, 26, and her sons Trevor, 5, and Bronston, 7, at the prayer vigil at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin (UTPB) Sunday for the region's mass shooting victims. Photo by Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Hundreds of people attended a prayer vigil at the University of Texas of the Permian Basin in Odessa, Texas, on Sunday evening to honor victims of the mass shooting in the region a day earlier, AP reports.

The big picture: 7 people were killed, including the shooter, and 22 others injured in the drive-by shooting in the West Texas sister cities of Odessa and Midland on Saturday. Odessa Mayor David Turner said West Texans "will get through the tragedy," per AP. "We will show our beloved state and nation what it means to be Permian Basin strong," he said.

Flags fly at half-staff at the UTPB. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
Lindsey Clark and her daughter Caitlin Clark take small flower bouquets provided by local Odessa residents before the UTPB prayer vigil. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
A prayer takes place at the UTPB. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images
The UTPB prayer vigil is the first of several vigils and prayer services for the shooting victims, per NewsWest 9. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images)

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In photos: 2020 Democratic candidates flock to Iowa steak fry

The crowd at the Polk County Democrats' Steak Fry in Des Moines, Iowa, Saturday. Photo: Polk County Democrats/Facebook

Organizers of the Polk County Democrats' Steak Fry in Des Moines, Iowa, say more than 12,200 attend Saturday's event, as 17 of the 19 Democratic presidential candidates made their pitch to voters in the state.

The big picture: The gathering comes less than 5 months ahead of the Iowa caucuses β€”the first to take place in the U.S.

See photosArrowSep 22, 2019

West Texas shooter reportedly purchased firearm through private sale

Police cars and tape block off a crime scene near to where a gunman was shot and killed at Cinergy Odessa movie theater in Odessa, Texas, following a mass shooting in the area. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Authorities tell ABC News and other media outlets that the gunman who killed 7 people and injured 22 others in a drive-by mass shooting in the West Texas sister cities of Odessa and Midland on Saturday afternoon obtained his firearm through a private sale.

Why it matters: The suspect, 36-year-old Seth Aaron Ator of Odessa, had tried to buy a firearm in January 2014 but was denied, the Texas Department of Public Safety said in a statement Tuesday. The agency said it could not legally disclose why, but a law enforcement official told AP it was due to a "mental health issue." The revelation is sure to drive the political debate over closing background check loopholes like the one that allows private vendors to sell weapons without asking about the buyer's legal status.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Sep 3, 2019

Dorian's devastation in Bahamas: What you need to know

A Marsh Harbour resident with donations. Photo: Alejandro Granadillo/NurPhoto via Getty Images

More than 2 weeks since Hurricane Dorian struck the Bahamas, the death toll remains at 50, but government data shows 1,300 people are still listed as missing, while much of the archipelago faced another tropical storm this weekend.

The latest: Bahamians escaped the bulk of storm Humberto, now a hurricane, as it passed offshore, but it still lashed the islands with sustained winds of 70 mph. The National Hurricane Center said. And Humberto's outer rain bands are forecast to dump 1–2 inches of additional rain with isolated storm total amounts of 6 inches.

Go deeperArrowUpdated Sep 16, 2019