Gov. Abbott issues statement on second anniversary of Midland-Odessa shooting


FILE – In this Sept. 1, 2019, file photo, a U.S. Mail vehicle, right, which was involved in Saturday’s shooting, sits outside the Cinergy entertainment center in Odessa, Texas. The mass shooting in West Texas spread terror over more than 10 miles (16 kilometers) as the gunman, Seth Aaron Ator, fired from behind the wheel of a car. Ator zigzagged through Midland and Odessa, two closely intertwined cities now brought closer by tragedy. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki, File)

AUSTIN (Nexstar)- Governor Greg Abbott today issued a statement on the 2nd anniversary of the Midland-Odessa shooting:

“Two years ago today, the Midland-Odessa community suffered a horrific tragedy when a shooter took the lives of seven innocent Texans and injured dozens more. This senseless act of violence marked a very dark period for Midland-Odessa, and we will never forget our fellow Texans whose lives were taken that day. In the wake of this attack, Texans across our state came together to support their brothers and sisters grieving in Midland and Odessa, and the state took immediate action to help prevent such a tragedy from happening again. Today, and every day, we remember and honor the lives lost in Midland-Odessa two years ago. We also continue to pray for the victims’ families and loved ones, and we thank the brave men and women of law enforcement who bravely responded to the attack that day. Together we will continue to work toward a safer and brighter future for all Texans.” 

To keep Texans safe and ensure that that tragedies like the one in Midland-Odessa never happen again, Governor Abbott issued eight executive orders directing state law enforcement to enhance anti-mass violence measures, called upon the Texas Safety Commission to identify any shortcomings in our systems, and promoted the Texas Department of Public Safety’s safe gun storage campaign. 

A recommendation of the Texas Safety Action Report led to the passage of important public safety legislation joint authored by Representative Brooks Landgraf and supported by Senator Kel Seliger and Representative Tom Craddick during the 87th Legislative Session. The bill increases the penalty to a state jail felony for those who lie on federal background checks that are already prohibited from owning a gun. Funding was also appropriated to promote the statewide safe gun storage campaign through 2023.

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