Suspect in Texas megachurch shooting identified; child shot not expected to survive

HOUSTON (Nexstar) — The woman suspected of opening fire at Houston’s popular Lakewood Church on Sunday is 36-year-old Genesse Ivonne Moreno, according to a search warrant Nexstar obtained Monday.

On Sunday afternoon, a woman entered Pastor Joel Osteen’s megachurch armed with a long gun, the Houston Police Department said Sunday. The suspect shot and injured one man before being killed by two off-duty security officers. The man was treated and released from the hospital, according to Houston Police Chief Troy Finner.

A 7-year-old child was shot in the head in the incident and is in critical condition. He is not expected to survive. Authorities identified the suspect as the biological mother of the child during a press conference Monday.

Woman killed after she opened fire in Joel Osteen’s megachurch, boy with her shot, hospitalized

The search warrant states Moreno was armed with an AR-15 and threatened to have a bomb. An officer on scene observed she has “substances consistent with the manufacture of explosive devices,” though it is not known now whether the threat was credible.

Police said during the Monday conference that the substances were “benign” and “common products,” and that anyone who would have been exposed to them would not have been harmed.

Police also said during the conference the gun she used was purchased by her in December.

The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission identified one of the off-duty officers as agent Adrian Herrera, who was working security for the church at the time of the shooting.

“While we are still gathering the facts on what took place at Lakewood Church, I can say that I’m extremely proud of the quick response of our agent as well as the other law enforcement agents on the scene,” TABC Chairman Kevin Lilly said. “These officers likely prevented a much greater tragedy through their brave actions.”

Herrera has been employed by TABC for around five years. He was placed on paid administrative leave pending an internal TABC investigation into the shooting, TABC said in a press release.

Houston Police Chief Troy Finner and Mayor John Whitmire held a press conference in Houston on Monday at 1:30 p.m. Watch the full conference in the video player at the top of this page.

Authorities said the preliminary investigation showed the suspect had a history of mental health disorders.

Police will be reviewing body-worn camera footage and security footage from the church during their investigation.

Nexstar Texas Correspondent Ryan Chandler will be there bringing live updates. Check back here for the latest information.

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