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Texas authorities foil mass shooting plot on San Antonio-area store

By
Kyle Barnett
Authorities said they seized firearms and ammunition from Thomas Blevins. Photo courtesy Kerr County Sheriff's Office
Authorities said they seized firearms and ammunition from Thomas Blevins. Photo courtesy Kerr County Sheriff's Office

May 31 (UPI) -- Authorities arrested a would-be mass shooter after investigators intercepted a message regarding his plans to attack a Texas retailer, the local sheriff's office said.

Thomas Blevins, 28, of Kerrville, Texas, stands accused of plotting the attack.

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The Kerr County Sheriff's Office called Blevins a "threat to national security" in a Facebook post regarding his arrest. Kerr County is located just to the northwest of San Antonio.

Blevins indicated he was going to undertake a mass shooting at a local Walmart, the statement said. Investigators said he has some "affiliation and networking with extremist ideologies."

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"KCSO Investigators confirmed Mr. Blevins' capability of following through with the threat and moved immediately to arrest him," the Kerr County Sheriff's Office said.

Kerr County Sheriff Larry Leitha said the community was fortunate to head off such an attack.

"Our investigators did outstanding work in this case, and possibly saved many lives," he said. "The plot interrupted in this case is unthinkable. We appreciate the assistance of all our law enforcement partners."

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The Kerr County Sheriff's Office assisted in the investigation alongside the FBI and Texas Department of Public Safety.

"This case reminds us that we need to always be vigilant. Many think 'That can't happen here,' and it was well on the way to happening," Leitha said.

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Blevins was being held on a $250,000 bond.

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In 2019 an El Paso Walmart was the scene of an anti-Latino attack in which a gunman killed 23 and wounded 23 others. Similarly, that gunman was found to have held extremist racial beliefs.

As of April more than one mass shooting had occurred in the United States for each day of 2021.

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