A gunman has walked into a church near San Antonio, Texas, and opened fire, killing up to 24 worshippers and injuring dozens more, local officials and witnesses say. The shooter was killed at the scene.
The incident happened just before noon on Sunday when officers were called to reports of an active shooter at the small church. Sutherland Springs, which is a community in Wilson County, is about 28 miles (45 kilometers) southeast of San Antonio.
A large number of emergency services, including multiple medical helicopters, have been called to the scene.
Sheriff Joe Tackitt confirmed that multiple people had been killed and others were taken to hospital, but the exact number of casualties was not immediately released. County Commissioner Albert Gamez, Jr. said that at least 27 people had been killed and dozens more have been injured.
Witnesses said the gunman entered the church and opened fire at dozens of worshippers who were gathered inside for a Sunday service. Among those killed and injured are believed to be a number of children, including a toddler.
The shooter is believed to be among those killed, although it was not immediately clear how and where he died. His identity or details about what may have motivated him were also not yet known. The FBI is at the scene.
“While the details of this horrific act are still under investigation, Cecilia and I want to send our sincerest thoughts and prayers to all those who have been affected by this evil act,” Texas Governor Greg Abbott said. “I want to thank law enforcement for their response and ask that all Texans pray for the Sutherland Springs community during this time of mourning and loss.”
President Donald Trump, who is currently on a visit to Japan, said he was monitoring the situation. “May God be with the people of Sutherland Springs, Texas. The FBI and law enforcement are on the scene,” he said on Twitter.
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