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Seven dead in shooting spanning Midland, Odessa

It was a shooting spree across several locations in both Midland and Odessa and ended with seven people dead and more than a dozen others injured.
Credit: AP
A U.S. Mail vehicle, right, which was involved in Saturday's shooting, is pictured outside the Cinergy entertainment center Sunday, Sept. 1, 2019, in Odessa, Texas. The death toll in the West Texas shooting rampage increased Sunday as authorities investigated why a man stopped by state troopers for failing to signal a left turn opened fire on them and fled, shooting over a dozen people as he drove before being killed by officers outside a movie theater. A police vehicle is partially blocked at left. (AP Photo/Sue Ogrocki)

ODESSA, Texas — Seven people are dead and 22 injured after a shooting that spanned multiple locations in Midland and Odessa. A single suspect is dead, leaving the total dead at eight - seven victims, one suspect.

Initial reports included two suspects, however at a press conference Saturday evening, Odessa Police Chief Michael Gerke said they had not confirmed a second suspect.

Thirteen people in various conditions were being treated at Medical Center Hospital Saturday, where a staging area with grief counselors had been set up for families of the victims, according to Medical Center Health Systems CEO Russell Tippin.

RELATED: How to help the victims of the Midland-Odessa shooting

Of the 13 patients, seven were in critical condition, two serious and one had died. It's not clear if that victim is among the five dead initially reported by Chief Gerke.

According to OPD and ECISD, a 15-year-old Odessa High School student was among those killed. Her brother is still in the hospital.

Following the shooting, the hospital was on lockdown for the safety of hospital officials and patients. The hospital is at capacity, and Tippin did not say the locations of the other injured.

UMC confirmed a 17-month-old was airlifted to Lubbock after being shot in the face.

DPS confirmed at a press conference on Sunday that the weapon used was an AR-style rifle, but does not know how the suspect obtained the weapon at this time.

Chief Gerke said the shooting started with a traffic stop along Interstate 20 in between Midland and Odessa just after 3 p.m. Two DPS troopers tried to pull over the driver of a gold Honda, who then pointed a rifle toward the rear window of his car and fired several shots at the troopers, hitting one of them.

RELATED: Day after Midland, Odessa shootings, Texas gun laws will be more lenient

The suspect fled the scene towards East Loop 338 before heading to 42nd street and continued shooting innocent people, including a Midland police officer and an Odessa police officer.  He also stole a mail truck, according to police.

The DPS trooper is in serious but stable condition, and the two other officers are in stable condition.

The shooting came to an end when the suspect was shot and killed near the Cinergy movie theater in Odessa. Gerke said he was a white male in his mid 30s.

Multiple areas were on lockdown while the shooting situation was active, including UT Permian Basin.

Governor Greg Abbott will be traveling to Odessa Sunday morning. He issued the following statement:

“The First Lady and I are heartbroken over this senseless and cowardly attack, and we offer our unwavering support to the victims, their families, and all the people of Midland and Odessa,” said Governor Abbott. “The state of Texas and the Department of Public Safety are working closely with local law enforcement to provide resources as needed and deliver justice for this heinous attack. I thank the first responders who have acted swiftly and admirably under pressure, and I want to remind all Texans that we will not allow the Lone Star State to be overrun by hatred and violence. We will unite, as Texans always do, to respond to this tragedy.”

The FBI is asking anyone with information about this tragic incident to contact the FBI's National Threat Operations Center at 800-CALLFBI (800-225-5324). 

Tips may also be reported anonymously online at tips.fbi.gov.

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