The El Paso shooting is being investigated as a possible hate crime. In the latest update from local authorities said the 21-year-old white male gunman may have been targeting minorities, and specifically immigrants, when he opened fire at the Cielo Vista Mall Walmart Saturday, killing 20 and injuring 26. It is believed somewhere between 1,000 and 3,000 people were shopping at the store when the gunman opened fire.
ABC 7's Jory Rand said on Twitter that the first 911 call related to the incident came in at 10:39 a.m. local time, with police arriving six minutes later.
"This is being called a "hate crime" meaning minorities, specifically immigrants, were targeted," he wrote on social media.
He later added that the FBI has not classified the tragedy as a hate crime yet.
"FBI walks back the statement of another law enforcement agency saying they are NOT ready to call this a hate crime- reviewing the evidence to determine the details of this shooting," he wrote in another tweet. "Local police says there IS a manifesto from the shooter, then says they need to validate it."
The gunman reportedly released a manifesto online in which he said he opened fire in "response to [the] His[panic invasion of Texas." He reportedly drove from Allen, a city north of Dallas, to El Paso to commit the crime. The drive takes almost 10 hours.
Authorities are reportedly examining the posting to determine if it was actually from him. A second person was also taken into custody, though it was not revealed what role, if any, they had in the investigation.
Walmart issued a statement on the incident on Twitter that read: "We're in shock over the tragic events at Cielo Vista Mall in El Paso, where store 2201 & club 6502 are located," the company wrote on social media. "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."0comments
"At this point, I’ve run out of condolences for every city, for every place. Sorry isn’t enough. My heart isn’t enough," wrote March For Our Lives co-founder Delaney Tarr. "All I can give is my promise to fight. To fight for El Paso, to fight for Americans. To fight for peace."
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott also released a statement on the tragedy, writing: "In El Paso, the Texas Dept. of Public Safety is assisting local law enforcement & federal authorities t bring this tragedy to the swiftest and safest possible conclusion. We thank all First Responders for their courageous response & urge all area residents to remain safe."
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