New Mexico

Pastor: Clovis teen shooter troubled, sought peace

(AP) - A pastor who knew the suspected gunman accused of killing two women and wounding four people inside a New Mexico public library says the teen was troubled and was trying to find "inner peace."

Living Word Church of God Pastor David Stevens told The Associated Press Tuesday the teen had been attending his church in Clovis, New Mexico, for three and a half months and gave no indication he could be violent.

Clovis officials said the gunman surrendered after the shooting Monday and was taken into custody after police entered the downtown building.

 

Stevens says the teen had been dating his daughter and appeared to be turning his life around. He says the teen had an anxiety attack on Sunday at church but returned for evening services.

Police have not identified the teen because of his age. Residents who know the teen saw images of him being led in handcuffs from the shooting scene. Police have said they detained only one suspect.

 

A woman who was in the Clovis-Carver Public Library when a man killed two people and wounded four others says the man told her to run, the Eastern New Mexico News reports.

Lisa Baird tells the newspaper that she was about 20 feet from the man as he opened fire inside the library.  "Run!," he yelled at her. "Why aren't you running? I'm shooting at you! Run!"

Baird says she dove under a nearby desk "and tried to squish up as small as possible." From there, Baird says she could hear the man moving around the library and firing multiple shots. Baird said police entered the library and began shouting for the man with the gun to "lay on the ground" repeatedly.

Police Chief Doug Ford said the suspect did not resist after police arrived. Clovis Mayor David Lansford says things could have been much worse had it not been for the quick response, training and courage of police. He calls the shooting tragic and senseless. "This is a big blow to our community," he said.

Clovis, a city of about 40,000, is about 200 miles east of Albuquerque, near the Texas state line. The area is home to Cannon Air Force Base.