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Texas church shooter Devin Kelley escaped a mental health clinic

He had been committed after accusations of abusing his wife and fracturing his stepson's skull.
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Texas church shooter Devin Kelley escaped a mental health clinic during his time in the Air Force in 2012, according to police reports.

Kelley had been sent to the facility after he was accused of assaulting his wife and hitting his infant stepson hard enough to fracture his skull.

Air Force documents say Kelley had attacked his wife by striking and kicking her, pulling her hair and pointing a loaded gun at her. He received a general court martial and was given a bad conduct discharge, 12 months of confinement and a reduction in rank.

However, the military failed to enter the domestic violence case into a database which should have made it illegal for him to own a gun, the Air Force said.

That wasn’t Kelley’s last instance of committing domestic violence. In the days leading up to the shooting, he sent his second wife’s mother threatening messages and it appears he targeted the church because his estranged wife’s family were part of the congregation. His grandmother-in-law was one of the victims.

When he escaped the facility five years ago, Xavier Alvarez, the employee who reported Kelley missing, told El Paso officers the 21-year-old was “was a danger to himself and others as he had already been caught sneaking firearms onto Holloman Air Force Base”.

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The police report also said he was “was attempting to carry out death threats” he had made against his military superiors, according to KPRC.

Alvarez told NBC News he found Kelley at a bus stop after he had cut through a river to cover his tracks.

“He was very quiet, but he did mention that given the opportunity he would try to go for the [officers’] guns,” Alvarez said.


He added: “He [Kelley] had verbalized that he wanted to get some kind of retribution to his chain of command.”

After Kelley was named as the suspect for the Texas church shooting, Alvarez said he received a chilling text from one of his former colleagues.

“We stopped the first one,” it read.

At least 26 were murdered by Kelley when he allegedly opening fire in the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, a small town outside of San Antonio, around 11:30am Sunday morning.

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