The family of a victim in the Sutherland Springs church massacre is suing the government for $50 million, and they’re pointing to mistakes that should have prevented the killer from obtaining guns.
Here’s what happened
After the deadly massacre at a Texas Baptist church, details surfaced of a clerical error by the Air Force in failing to report a previous violent incident with the killer to a federal database that is used in background checks for guns purchases.
The killer had been convicted in 2012 of a violent domestic assault against his then-wife and stepson. At the time of his conviction, he had been a member of the Air Force and plead guilty in a court martial over the attack.
He was able to murder 27 people at the small church before speeding away, but a witness nearby gave chase and engaged in a gunfight with the attacker. Police say he shot himself in the head.
“Admitted, systemic and longstanding failure”
The lawsuit from the family filed Friday in federal court alleges that the Air Force could have prevented the attack.
The lawsuit claims that the attacker “was able to purchase an assault-style rifle as a direct result of the U.S. Air Force’s admitted, systemic and longstanding failure to comply with the law and its own internal policies, regulations, and guidelines.”
The parents of Bryan Holcombe filed the lawsuit – he was shot and killed in the attack.
Here’s a local news video about the lawsuit: