Governor Greg Abbott posted on social media on Monday that the man who is allegedly responsible for killing seven people and wounding dozens of others during a shooting rampage this weekend had previously failed a background check.
The suspected gunman had been fired from his job hours before the incident.
The Hill reported:
“Not only did the gunman have a criminal history … he also previously failed a gun purchase background check in Texas,” Abbott tweeted, “& he didn’t go thru a background check for the gun he used in Odessa. We must keep guns out of criminals’ hands.”
Not only did the Odessa gunman have a criminal history…
…he also previously failed a gun purchase background check in Texas…
…& he didn’t go thru a background check for the gun he used in Odessa.
We must keep guns out of criminals’ hands. https://t.co/vgrqcHtBtF
It is unclear how the gunman, identified Sunday as 36-year-old Seth Aaron Ator, obtained the AR-style rifle he used when he opened fire on Saturday, fatally shooting a trooper, two police officers and four others.
Ator was arrested for evading arrest and criminal trespass in 2001 and received a form of probation after pleading guilty to both misdemeanor charges, the Austin American-Statesman reports. There were no open warrants for his arrest.
He had been fired from his trucking job hours before the mass shooting, and he reportedly got into a verbal altercation with his boss at an oilfield services company, with both men calling 911 to report the incident, the Texas Tribune reports. The gunman also reportedly called the FBI’s tip line.
Despite the reports, police say a motive is not yet known for the shooting.
Ator lead officials on a high-speed chase during which he indiscriminately fired at motorists and police officers but was killed by officers after a chase, authorities say.
Many people agree that ‘background’ checks did its job, by preventing this man from purchasing firearms.
However, the incident also clearly indicates to many people that obtaining a firearm is NOT impossible for criminals, and if guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have them, leaving the general public prey to any disgruntled, mentally disturbed person who decided to take lives.