Pence leads vigil after Texas church shooting, says gunman 'failed'

By Ed Adamczyk Contact the Author   |  Nov. 9, 2017 at 7:32 AM
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Nov. 9 (UPI) -- Vice President Mike Pence led a vigil Wednesday evening in the small Texas community devastated by a church shooting that killed 26 people.

With President Donald Trump in Asia, Pence led the delegation to Sutherland Springs, Texas, where a gunman opened fire during a church service on Sunday.

"Faith tells us to overcome evil with good. So this weekend I hope a lot of Americans do what we're doing tonight," Pence said.

Pence and his wife accompanied Texas Gov. Greg Abbott to Brooke Army Medical Center at Fort Sam Houston, Texas, and met with survivors. They later led a vigil, attended by hundreds on the football field of Floresville High School, a 15-minute drive from the First Baptist Church where the shootings occurred.

Pence said whatever gunman Devin Kelley's motive was, he failed.

"Whatever animated the evil that descended on that church last Sunday at the attacker's desire to silence their testimony of faith, he failed," Pence said. "The voice of faith, the witness of faith in that small church now echoes across the world."

Several children and an unborn baby were included in the death toll. Twenty other people were injured, 10 critically. Police said Kelley shot himself in his vehicle after he was wounded by an armed witness who chased him for 10 miles after the shootings.

Abbott also offered encouragement, urging listeners not to lose their religious faith. He also displayed a proclamation calling for a day of prayer across the state on Sunday.

The FBI said Wednesday it was unable to decrypt Kelley's cellphone. The fingerprint unlock feature of the Apple iPhone, Touch ID, works for only 48 hours after its last use.

The FBI informed Apple that it was attempting to unlock the device after the time period had elapsed, a source familiar with the investigation said.

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