Texas Mass Shooter Devin Kelley Escaped From a Mental Hospital in 2012

Sutherland Springs, Texas, church  shooter Devin Kelley (Texas Department of Public Safety)
Sutherland Springs, Texas, church shooter Devin Kelley (Texas Department of Public Safety)

The gunman who killed 26 people on Saturday in Sutherland Springs, Texas, escaped from a psychiatric hospital in 2012. Such evidence may indeed feed the beast in the “gun control vs. mental-health care” debate that inevitably arrises after a mass shooting.


The New York Times reports that while Devin P. Kelley was in the Air Force, authorities took him into custody at an El Paso, Texas, bus station after he escaped from Peak Behavioral Health Services.

Kelley was sent there after being charged in a military court with assaulting his wife and cracking his stepson’s skull. The Times reports:

The report filed by the El Paso officers says that the person who reported Mr. Kelley missing from the hospital advised them that he “suffered from mental disorders,” and that he “was attempting to carry out death threats” against “his military chain of command.” The man “was a danger to himself and others as he had already been caught sneaking firearms onto Holloman Air Force Base,” it added. The police report was published on Tuesday by KPRC, a Houston television station.

Later that year, Mr. Kelley pleaded guilty in a military court to repeated assaults on his wife and her son, a toddler, including one that left the boy with a fractured skull. He was sentenced to a year in a Navy prison.

On Monday, President Donald Trump said that “mental health is your problem here” when asked about the shooting.


He added that the incident wasn’t “a guns situation,” saying: “This is a mental-health problem at the highest level. It’s a very, very sad event.”

Read more at the New York Times.

Ms. Bronner Helm is the Senior Editorial Director at Colorlines. Mouthy Black Girl. Rosalynn Carter Mental Health Fellow. Shea Butter Feminist. Virgo Sun, Aries Moon.



Ok...soooo, do we give the Rotten Orange a cookie for getting one right?