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Cops: Call From Dad Prevented Possible Mass Shooting

Texas man planned copycat shooting, police say
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 11, 2019 7:37 AM CDT
Police say the man was turned away from businesses where he tried to buy an assault rifle.   (Getty Images/artas)

(Newser) – A concerned father and law-abiding businesses helped thwart a potential mass shooting in Texas last week, police say. Officers in Fort Worth say the father of a 27-year-old man contacted police on Sept. 3, warning that his son had not been taking his medication and he was worried that he could carry out a mass shooting. Police were able to find the man based on information his father had provided. "The individual had withdrawn several hundred dollars, I think it was between $600 and $700, in an effort to go purchase an assault rifle," says Interim Fort Worth Police Chief Ed Kraus, per CBS DFW. "He freely admitted to our officers that that was his intent ... that he was going to perform a copycat shooting spree like what occurred in Midland and Odessa."

Officers say the man, who was already known to police, had tried to buy guns at multiple businesses but was turned away because he didn't pass background checks. Officer Landon Rollins tells the Fort Worth Star-Telegram that the man had started trying to buy a gun on the streets "which we all know is very accessible." He says the man, whose name has not been released, is now receiving mental health treatment and authorities are trying to determine how much of a threat to the public he is. Rollins is a member of the city's Crisis Intervention Team, which works with county mental health teams and Homeland Security official to identify potentially violent individuals. "When you hear the names Columbine, El Paso, Las Vegas—we do not want Fort Worth to ever be on that list," Rollins says. (Dozens of people were arrested after FBI threat assessments last month.)

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