Two people were killed and one was critically injured in a shooting Sunday morning at a church in White Settlement, Texas, KIRO-TV reports.
The incident was reported shortly after 11:00 a.m. at West Freeway Church of Christ near Fort Worth.
It’s a horrific day in Tarrant County, Texas. Our hearts and prayers are with the members of the West Freeway Church of Christ. The heroic actions of armed citizens saved countless lives today. We will continue to pray for those impacted by this senseless violence. pic.twitter.com/p9xwZLY1hO
— Fort Worth Police OA (@FWPOA) December 29, 2019
Fort Worth Fire Department spokesman Mike Drivdahl said the agency sent out an "active threat" assignment about 11:30 a.m. and arrived at the scene to assist White Settlement police and fire.
One person died at the scene of the shooting, one person died enroute to the hospital, and another critically injured person was taken to hospital.
White Settlement Police Chief J.P. Bevering told reporters that the gunman entered the church during a live-streamed service and opened fire. Two parishioners returned fire, striking the suspect who died at the scene, Fox News reports.
"As we stated, the suspect is deceased and the threat has stopped thanks to the heroic actions of those two parishioners at the church," Bevering said.
Local and federal law enforcement agencies are investigating a motive to the attack.
“Unfortunately, this country has seen so many of these that we’ve actually gotten used to it at this point. And it’s tragic and it’s a terrible situation, especially during the holiday season,” Jeoff Williams, a regional director with the Texas Department of Public Safety, said at the news conference. “I would like to point out that we have a couple of heroic parishioners who stopped short of just anything that you can even imagine, saved countless lives, and our hearts are going out to them and their families as well.”
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton tweeted, "As reports come in, please pray for any victims and their families, this congregation, and the law enforcement officials at the scene."
We are shocked and saddened to hear reports of a shooting at a church in White Settlement.
As reports come in, please pray for any victims and their families, this congregation, and the law enforcement officials at the scene. My office will assist in any way needed.
— Texas Attorney General (@TXAG) December 29, 2019
Texas Gov. Greg Abott tweeted, "Thanks to security at the church in White Settlement for swiftly ending the attack."
Thanks to security at the church in White Settlement for swiftly ending the attack.
We’re working with local law enforcement & elected officials to ensure they have all resources needed to respond to this event.
Texans will unite as always. https://t.co/Gv9gVJiUao
— Greg Abbott (@GregAbbott_TX) December 29, 2019
Statement on shooting at West Freeway Church of Christ in White Settlement: pic.twitter.com/Crrrvavvs6
— Gov. Greg Abbott (@GovAbbott) December 29, 2019
Authorities have not identified the victims or the suspect.