Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old man from Allen, Texas was arrested at the scene. He would later go on to tell investigators he wanted to shoot as many Mexicans as possible in the massacre
At least 20 people have been killed and 26 others wounded in the deadliest mass shooting in the US this year, after a white gunman opened fire inside an El Paso Walmart on Saturday minutes after posting an ‘anti-immigrant’ manifesto online.
One suspect was taken into custody at the scene ‘without incident’. He has tentatively been identified as Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old man from Allen, Texas, a town 30 minutes outside of Dallas.
Crusius is allegedly the man seen in surveillance footage walking in through the front entrance of the Cielo Vista Mall Walmart with an AK-47 assault rifle.
The gunman, wearing what appears to be ear defenders and cargo pants, first opened fire in the parking lot outside the store, shooting and killing ‘locals that were fundraising outside the Walmart selling water. Children and adults.’
He then walked through the front door in a calm and confident state, as if he was ‘on a mission’, a witness said.
The twenty-minute massacre that followed would go on to become the eighth deadliest in US history.
He would later go on to tell investigators he wanted to shoot as many Mexicans as possible, according to ABC News.
One suspect in Saturday’s mass shooting in El Paso is in custody. He has been identified in press reports as Patrick Crusius, a 21-year-old man from Dallas. Crusius is allegedly the man seen in surveillance footage walking in through the front entrance of the Walmart with an AK-47 assault rifle
The gunman is seen wearing what appears to be either headphones or ear defenders during the shooting on Saturday
Crusius is allegedly the man seen in surveillance footage walking in through the front entrance of the Walmart with an AK-47 assault rifle. He is seen right in a photograph that was reportedly taken after his arrest in El Paso on Saturday
In a press conference, El Paso Police Chief Greg Allen confirmed the suspect to be a 21-year-old from Allen but declined to confirm his name.
Gregg added that law enforcement were in possession of a manifesto, titled ‘The Inconvenient Truth’, written by the suspect which shows a possible ‘nexus’ to a hate crime.
Copies of the document had been shared on social media hours earlier in which Crusius cited a ‘Hispanic invasion of Texas’ as his motive for the shooting.
‘If we can get rid of enough people, then our way of life can be more sustainable,’ Crusius wrote.
‘In general, I support the Christchurch shooter and his manifesto. This attack is a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas.’
Crusius’ family home in Dallas is some 650 miles – or a nine hour drive – from the scene of the shooting in the southern Texas city, which has a large Hispanic population.
Three Mexican nationals are among the dead, according to Mexican President Andrés Manuel López Obrador, with another six among the injured.
The Cielo Vista Mall is a popular shopping destination for people both sides of the US-Mexico border.
‘F*** this is going to be so s*** but I can’t wait any longer,’ a message on the forum Crusius is said to have posted the manifesto on reads, dated Saturday August 3, just hours before the shooting.
‘I know that the media is going to try to frame my incorrectly, but y’all will know the truth! I’m probably going to die today.’
One eye-witness captured the moment the suspect, believed to be Crusius, was taken into custody on Saturday afternoon. The reported suspect lives some 650 miles away from the scene of the El Paso shooting
A separate angle of the arrest is captured by a bus passenger, showing the currently unnamed suspect being led away
Alice Baland, who lives four houses down from Crusius’s family, said a retired couple lives at the home associated with the suspect. She described them as sweet people who regularly attend church (Crusius pictured right, his dad, left)
Panicked shoppers flee the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso on Saturday after a gunman opened fire inside a nearby Walmart
Local reports indicate that at least 22 people were killed in the shooting in El Paso on Saturday
Kendall Long (left) comforts Kianna Long (right) who was in the freezer section of a Walmart during the shooting
Police arrived at the scene six minutes after the gunman first opened fire.
The culprit surrendered his weapon inside the store as soon as he came into contact with law enforcement.
The 21-year-old was taken into custody ‘without incident’. Officers didn’t fire any shots during the arrest, officials said.
Currently, prosecutors say they’re seeking capital murder charges against the suspect but may also proceed with hate crime or domestic terrorism charges, pending the outcome of an FBI investigation into the ‘anti-immigrant’ manifesto.
A second person was also taken into custody at the scene, however law enforcement have yet to confirm what role, if any, the person played in the shooting, NBC News reported.
Del Sol Medical Center said the hospital received 11 victims – nine of them listed in critical but stable condition.
Two of those treated were in stable condition.
The University Medical Center of El Paso received 13 patients, a spokesperson said.
Two minors, including a two-year-old, were stabilized and transferred to El Paso Children’s Hospital.
The victims’ conditions ranged from minor injury to fatal.
Shortly after, Sgt. Enrique Carrillo, a police spokesman, said a suspect was in custody and there was no longer danger to the public.
A local NBC affiliate, KTSM-TV, is reporting that at least 18 people were killed.
According to public records, Crusius’ last known address was his family’s home in Allen, Texas, where he lived with his parents, twin sister and older brother.
The home, around 30 minutes outside of Dallas and more than 9 hours drive away from El Paso, is reportedly being raided by police.
Alice Baland, who lives four houses down, said a retired couple lives at the home. She described them as sweet people who regularly attend church.
It’s not clear if Crusius has any connections to the El Paso area.
A video of the suspect’s arrest was captured by a witness on Snapchat and has since circulated on various social media platforms.
The man depicted in the video matches the description of the shooter and resembles the profile of Crusius.
Public records show Crusius’ last known address was his family’s home in Allen, Texas (above), about 30 minutes outside of Dallas and more than 9 hours away from El Paso. It is not clear if he has any connections to the El Paso area
The image above is from a video posted on social media showing a terrified shopper hiding while the gunman fired his weapon in El Paso on Saturday
More shoppers are seen seeking shelter under store fixtures to escape Crusius’ line of fire
A number of local businesses, stores, shops, and restaurants were placed on lock down during the shooting. Crusius’ family home in Dallas (seen top right in the map) is some 650 miles – or a nine hour drive – from the scene of the shooting in El Paso, a southern Texas city with a large Hispanic population
The photo on the left shows a shopper running for cover during the shooting in El Paso on Saturday. The photo on the right shows an officer helping a shopper away from the scene. It appears there are blood stains on the shopper’s clothing
The local Walmart (seen in the above stock image) is located near the Cielo Vista Mall
In a tweet on Saturday evening, Trump called the El Paso attack an ‘act of cowardice’ but didn’t respond to calls from Democrats to reform gun ownership lawa
Walmart issued a statement on its Twitter account which read: ‘We’re in shock over the tragic events at Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, where store 2201 & club 6502 are located’
‘Active Shooting Stay away from Cielo Vista Mall Area. Scene is Still Active,’ the police department tweeted on Saturday
Later on Saturday, El Paso police said there were ‘multiple reports of multiple shooters’
Earlier on Saturday, the police tweeted: ‘Active Shooter in area of Hawkins and Gateway East.’ Hawkins and Gateway are two streets that flank the Walmart. El Paso police later confirmed that the active shooter was inside a Walmart
Beto O’Rourke, the Democratic presidential candidate and former U.S. congressman who represented El Paso, tweeted: ‘Truly heartbreaking. Stay safe, El Paso’
Pete Buttigieg said he used to visit the mall with his grandmother, ‘now it’s one more mass shooting scene’
O’Rourke’s successor, House Rep. Veronica Escobar, tweeted: ‘Utterly heartbroken by the developing news in El Paso. Monitoring the situation and in communication with our law enforcement. Please stay safe.’
Texas Governor Greg Abbott tweeted: ‘In El Paso, the Texas Dept. of Public Safety is assisting local law enforcement & federal authorities to bring this tragedy to the swiftest & safest possible conclusion.’
Trump tweeted: ‘Terrible shootings in ElPaso, Texas. Reports are very bad, many killed. Working with State and Local authorities, and Law Enforcement.’
Pence Tweeted: ‘Saddened by the loss of so many innocent lives in El Paso, TX. Our praters are with the victims, their families, and the entire community. Grateful for the courageous efforts and swift action by federal law enforcement and local first responders’
Representative Veronica Escobar said she was ‘utterly heartbroken’ by the shooting
Texas Governor Greg Abbott thanks first responders for acting quickly to minimize civilian casualties
When the first shots rang out, the Waltmart store was set to be ‘at capacity’ with more than 3,000 shoppers inside hoping to get ahead of the busy back-to-school season.
At least three other businesses in the area were placed on lock down as a result of the shooting, including a Red Lobster franchise and a Hooter’s location.
One witness said he saw at least one person inside the store with a fatal head wound, and he saw shoppers in bloodied clothes.
Witness Miguel Rodriguez told The Daily Beast the gunman, ‘started shooting everyone, aisle by aisle, with rage.’
Witnesses told CBS 4 News they believe the suspect only stopped shooting because he ran out of ammunition.
Video posted on Twitter showed customers at one department store being evacuated with their hands up.
‘Hands in the air!’ an officer can be heard shouting in the footage.
‘We heard shots and saw smoke,’ said Victor Gamboa, 18, who works at the McDonald’s inside the Walmart store where the shooting took place.
‘I saw a man on the floor full of blood. He appeared to be dead. It happened very quickly.’
Gamboa said employees sheltered customers who huddled on the ground during the shooting rampage.
They were on the ground for some 15 minutes until officers arrived and led the survivors to a Sam’s Club across the street.
A family of three was one of a dozen waiting outside a local bus station, trying to get back to their car, in blocked-off Walmart parking lot.
‘I heard the shots but I thought they were hits, like roof construction,’ said Adriana Quezada, 39, who was in Walmart with in the women’s clothing section with her two children.
She said she saw four men, dressed in black, wearing shirts, moved together firing guns indiscriminately.
‘I saw four men, shooting everywhere,’ Quezada said.
‘I told my son, those are gunshots.’
Her daughter, 19, and son, 16, threw themselves on the ground, then ran out of the Walmart through an emergency exit.
They were unhurt.
Evan McMorris-Santoro, a reporter for the Vice news site, tweeted that he was at a town hall event for House Rep. Veronica Escobar when it was shut down due to the situation nearby.
Morris-Santoro clarified that the scene was ‘not close to us.’
Beto O’Rourke, the Democratic presidential candidate and former U.S. congressman who represented El Paso, tweeted: ‘Truly heartbreaking. Stay safe, El Paso.
‘Please follow all directions of emergency personnel as we continue to get more updates.’
After his tweet, O’Rourke said he was distraught by the news of the mass-shooting in his hometown.
An emotional O’Rourke told reporters on Saturday in Las Vegas that he had spoken by phone to El Paso Mayor Dee Margo, the city’s sheriff and U.S. Rep. Veronica Escobar.
He says they were still learning details about the attack at or near the Cielo Vista Mall, in which police say multiple people were killed and a suspect was taken into custody.
O’Rourke said he planned to return home immediately to be with his family.
He asked ‘for everyone’s strength for El Paso right now. Everyone’s resolve to make sure that this does not continue to happen in this country.’
O’Rourke’s successor, House Rep. Veronica Escobar, tweeted: ‘Utterly heartbroken by the developing news in El Paso.
‘Monitoring the situation and in communication with our law enforcement. Please stay safe.’
Texas Governor Greg Abbott condemned the shooting as ‘a heinous and senseless act of violence.’
He also thanked first responders for helping to minimalize civilian casualties by acting swiftly, courageously and effectively.
The White House says President Trump has been briefed on the shooting and has spoken to Attorney General William Barr and Abbott.
Trump tweeted: ‘Today’s shooting in El Paso, Texas was not only tragic, it was an act of cowardice. I know that I stand with everyone in this Country to condemn today’s hateful act. There are no reasons or excuses that will ever justify killing innocent people.
‘Melania and I send our heartfelt thoughts and prayers to the great people of Texas,’ he continued.
New York Governor Andrew Cuomo voiced his outrage over the shooting too, but also issued a damning indictment of Washington and the Trump administration for failing to take a hard-line stance on gun-control and against the NRA.
‘My heart breaks for the victims of the horrific shooting in El Paso earlier today,’ Cuomo began.
‘While President Trump cowardly kowtows to the NRA, the gun violence epidemic is tearing apart our nation and people are dying.
‘Thoughts and prayers will not stop this madness. In New York, we stand up to the NRA. We stand up for the safety of children. We stand up for sanity.
‘It’s past time leaders in Washington did the same. Until they do, these senseless murders will continue,’ Cuomo added.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer also added they were praying for the friends and families of the victims and took the time to thank first responders for their life-saving work.
Both politicians also called for their DC peers to take action against gun-violence.
‘Too many families in too many communities have been forced to endure the daily horror of gun violence. Enough is enough,’ Pelosi said. ‘The Republican Senate’s continued inaction dishonors our solemn duty to protect innocent men, women and children and end this epidemic once and for all.’
Presidential hopeful Marianne Williamson extended her thoughts to the people ‘throughout my beloved home state of Texas, in this agonizing moment.’
‘And prayers for all the rest of us as well, that we might summon up the courage to remove this scourge of gun violence from our midst. Let us pray and let us act,’ she continued.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives announced that it has dispatched federal agents to the scene to assist local law enforcement.
‘Please stay away from the area and refrain from posting first responder activity on social media,’ the ATF’s Dallas bureau tweeted on Saturday.
One witness said he saw at least one person inside the store with a fatal head wound, and he saw shoppers in bloodied clothes (pictured: bystanders shown in tears as they walk away from the scene)
People arrive at MacArthur Elementary looking for family and friends as the school is being used a re-unification center during the aftermath of a shooting
An El Paso Police Officer interviews a witness who was inside the Walmart near the Cielo Vista Mall
Two Walmart employees comfort one another outside the El Paso mall in the wake of the shooting’s aftermath
When the first shots rang out, the Waltmart store was set to be ‘at capacity’ with more than 3,000 shoppers inside hoping to get ahead of the busy back-to-school season
A family that was shopping near Walmart during the shooting sought cover in nearby Landry’s Seafood, hostess Sofia Cervantes told USA TODAY.
‘They are in shock right now,’ Cervantes said. ‘They were barely able to talk to us.’
An employee of a nearby Olive Garden told The New York Times that the restaurant has also been placed in lock down.
At least 10 people ran into the restaurant seeking cover, the employee said.
‘We don’t have any information, just that there’s an active shooter at the Walmart in the same parking lot as we are,’ the employee said.
‘We’re just on lock down right now.
‘The SWAT team just came in and told us that they had cleared the building and told us lock the doors.’
An assistant manager at a Men’s Wearhouse in the Cielo Vista Mall said at least 15 people came into the store when the shooting started.
Susana Franco said police officers, military and the SWAT team could be seen from her store’s front windows.
‘They’re not letting people in the parking lot,’ she said. ‘They’re trying to evacuate all of the mall.’
A Walmart employee told KTSM that she was working by the self-checkout when the first gunshots rang out.
The employee, named Leslie, said she initially thought the loud bang was caused by boxes being dropped.
‘I thought it was just like loud boxes being dropped or something, until they got closer and closer,’ she said. ‘That’s when I looked at my co-worker, and we looked at each other like shocked and scared.’
‘I got all the people that I could, I even found a little girl that was missing from her parents, and I got her, too. I tried to get as many people as I could out,’ she said.
El Paso is located on the border separating the United States and Mexico
Heavily armed police are seen next to an FBI armored vehicle next to the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso on Saturday
Police stand at attention during an active shooter at a Walmart in El Paso on Saturday
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms dispatched agents to aid local law enforcement
A local police officer is seen directing passersby near the scene of the shooting in El Paso on Saturday
Throughout the day there had been numerous reports on social media of multiple shooters at the scene and at other locations.
Police later said that following the arrest of Crusius, there was no further threat.
On his LinkedIn page in 2015, Crusius wrote that he was not motivated to do anything other than ‘enough to get by’. The page was taken down from the website shortly after Crusius was tentatively associated with the shooting.
His profile states that he attended Plano High School. Another source said he may have also attended and later graduated from Liberty High School in Frisco.
‘I’m not really motivated to do anything more than what’s necessary to get by,’ he wrote in the About section of his LinkedIn profile. ‘Working in general sucks, but I guess a career in Software Development suits me well. I spend about 8 hours every day on the computer so that counts as technology experience I guess. Pretty much gonna see what technology careers present themselves; go with the wind.’
Referencing his time at high school, Crusius said that he didn’t participate in extracurricular activities citing a ‘lack of freedom.’
On his LinkedIn page in 2015, lead suspect Crusius wrote that he was not motivated to do anything other than ‘enough to get by’. The page was taken down from the website shortly after Crusius was named as a suspect. The page was taken down from the website shortly after Crusius was tentatively associated with the shooting
Heavily armed police are seen outside the Walmart near the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso on Saturday
Police said there were no more threats to the area after a suspect was apprehended
Law enforcement officials are seen in front of a Hooters restaurant, which was placed on lock down during the shooting
A police officer armed with an assault rifle and wearing a bulletproof vest is seen at the scene of the shooting in El Paso on Saturday
A heavy police presence was observed on the roadways near the mall in El Paso
The suspect was taken into custody alive after the shooting in El Paso on Saturday
A local police officer is seen near the Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso on Saturday
No one was shot at Cielo Vista Mall or on its property, according to Simon Property Group Chief Marketing Officer Mikael Thygesen. 4,000 people were said to be inside the facility at the time.
Thygesen says the shooting occurred on Walmart’s property and in the Walmart parking lot.
The mall was put on lockdown as a result of the shooting, Thygesen said, but there is said to be no ongoing threat to the public at this time.
Walmart issued a statement on its Twitter account which read: ‘We’re in shock over the tragic events at Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, where store 2201 & club 6502 are located.
‘We’re praying for the victims, the community & our associates, as well as the first responders.
‘We’re working closely with law enforcement & will update as appropriate.’
In an urgent call to action on Twitter,local authorities have urged members of the public to come forward to donate blood as the victim count of the massacre continues to rise.
At least two blood donation centers in the area were open in the shooting’s wake: Vitalant Blood Services on 424 S. Mesa Hills Dr and on 1338 N Zaragoza Rd.
As of Saturday afternoon, a Facebook post from Vitalant said that 240 units of blood had been supplied to victims of the shooting, and that both of the donation centers were now at capacity as a result of the overwhelming response.
‘We will need your precious donations going forward for ongoing victim needs and to replenish supplies,’ the center said.
El Paso has a population of 680,000, of which 83 percent are of Hispanic descent, according to US census figures.
In recent months El Paso has also become one of the busiest entry points for undocumented migrants, especially from Central America, seeking asylum in the United States.
On a weekend the city attracts droves of shoppers from Mexico, including from its Mexican sister city Ciudad Juarez, population 1.5 million.
In an urgent call to action on Twitter, local authorities have urged members of the public to come forward to donate blood as the victim count of the massacre continues to rise (Hundreds of people are pictured standing outside an El Paso blood donation center
One good Samaritan handed out slices of pizza to the donors waiting in line
As of Saturday afternoon, a Facebook post from Vitalant said that 240 units of blood had been supplied to victims of the shooting, and that both of the donation centers were now at capacity as a result of the overwhelming response