Sep 2, 2019

Odessa shooter called police and FBI after losing job

FBI special agent Christopher Combs leaves a press conference about the Odessa shooting Monday. Photo by Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

The perpetrator of a mass shooting in Odessa, Texas, Saturday had been fired from his job that morning and later called police and the FBI before opening fire in a drive-by shooting that left 7 dead and 22 injured, per AP.

What we know: The shooter had already been "in trouble" at work, according to FBI special agent Christopher Combs, and was terminated from his job at Journey Oilfield Services that morning. But authorities say his firing was not the cause of his actions.

  • “This did not happen because he was fired. He showed up to work enraged,” Combs said.
  • Authorities say the shooter then made "rambling" calls to police and the FBI before beginning his rampage.
  • Combs also described the shooter's residence as “strange” and it “reflect[s] what his mental state was going into this.”

Go deeper: Mass shooting near Odessa, Texas: What we know

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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

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.

See photosArrowSep 2, 2019

O'Rourke: "Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15"

Former Texas Rep. Beto O'Rourke, whose home town of El Paso is recovering from a mass shooting that targeted Mexicans and left 22 people dead, re-emphasized his stance on buybacks for assault weapons, saying "Hell, yes, we're going to take your AR-15, your AK-47. We're not going to allow it to be used against our fellow Americans anymore."

Why it matters: O'Rourke has been laser focused on integrating gun control measures in his campaign since the El Paso shooting at a Walmart in August.

In his final question of overcoming hardship: "Everything that I've learned about resilience, I've learned from my hometown of El Paso, Texas."

Go deeper: O’Rourke on CNN: America’s mass shooting epidemic is “f***ed up”

Keep ReadingArrowSep 13, 2019