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Congregants Shoot Gunman in Live-Streamed Attack

2 people are killed in Texas church
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Dec 29, 2019 4:35 PM CST
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An officer walks near the scene after a church shooting at West Freeway Church of Christ on Sunday, Dec. 29, 2019 in White Settlement, Texas.   (Juan Figueroa/The Dallas Morning News via AP)
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(Newser) – Congregants shot and killed a man who opened fire in a church near Fort Worth, Texas, on Sunday, killing the attacker, police said. A person shot by the suspect also died and a second parishioner has life-threatening injuries following the attack at the West Freeway Church of Christ, White Settlement Police Department Chief JP Bevering said during a news conference Sunday afternoon. The assailant fired once before the "heroic actions" of the congregants retaliated to cut his assault short, Bevering said. "Unfortunately, this country has seen so many of these that we've actually gotten used to it at this point," said Jeoff Williams, a regional director with the Texas Department of Public Safety. "And it's tragic and it’s a terrible situation, especially during the holiday season."

Authorities have released scant details about the victims, the shooter, and what led to the attack. An elder at the church told the New York Times that one of those killed was a security guard who responded to the shooter, calling him a dear friend. WFAA reports that the church live-streamed the service on YouTube and that the video (see a screenshot) showed a man wearing a long coat produce a rifle or a shotgun which he fired twice before someone shot back. Some members of the congregation ducked behind pews while others with handguns rushed the gunman. It said church members can be heard screaming and crying. The AP hasn't seen the video, but a chilling excerpt was posted here (WARNING: disturbing images). Two people with minor injuries were treated at the scene.

(Read more church shootings stories.)

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