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Stricter gun laws could have meant 'hundreds more dead' in Texas shooting, according to Trump

Image source: TheBlaze

President Donald Trump on Tuesday said that stricter gun laws may have led to a larger massacre during Sunday's mass shooting at a Sutherland Springs, Texas church.

What did Trump say?

In a news conference from Seoul, South Korea, a reporter asked the president if he would consider "extreme vetting" for gun purchases.

Trump said, "If you did what you're suggesting, there would have been no difference three days ago and you might not have had that very brave person who happened to have a gun or a rifle in his trunk."

Trump added that if Good Samaritan Stephen Willeford — who reportedly shot church shooter Devin Kelley outside of the church — wasn't armed, America may have "hundreds more dead" instead of 26 victims.

"That's the way I feel about it," Trump said, and noted that new gun control legislation is "not going to help."

He added, "When you look at the city with the strongest gun laws in our nation — Chicago — and Chicago is a disaster."

"Just remember," Trump said. "If this man didn't have a gun or a rifle, you'd be talking about a much worse situation in the great state of Texas."

Would stricter gun laws have mattered in this case?

While many have argued that more thorough vetting would have prevented Kelley from obtaining the weaponry he used to take the lives of those in the First Baptist Church, it's not necessarily the case in this particular instance.

It was reported on Monday that the Air Force failed to process 2012 domestic assault convictions through a federal database which would have prevented Kelley from obtaining guns.

Kelley should have already been legally obtain firearms — but a clerical error changed that.

Ann Stefanek, a spokesperson for the Air Force, told NPR in an email, "Initial information indicates that Kelley's domestic violence offense was not entered into the National Criminal Information Center database by the Holloman Air Force Base Office of Special Investigations."

According to an official at the Pentagon, who spoke to NPR's Tom Bowman, "This was mishandled by the Air Force Office of Special Investigations at Holloman Air Force Base in New Mexico, where Kelley was serving when he was arrested."

"An investigation is now underway, and the Air Force is taking it very seriously," the source added.

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