The new report is sparking outrage throughout the country — people are flooding social media feeds Tuesday, demanding answers after it was revealed that the U.S. Air Force did not report Devin Patrick Kelley’s domestic violence conviction to the FBI.
Kelley shot up a Texas church on Sunday, killing 26 people and wounding another 20. It was the deadliest mass shooting to ever take place in the state of Texas.
The investigation into the shooting spree reveals that the U.S. Air Force failed to report Kelley’s domestic violence to the FBI even though it was required by the Pentagon. As a result, Kelley was free to purchase weapons.
Kelley’s conviction wasn’t submitted to the FBI’s Criminal Justice Investigation Services Division for inclusion in the National Criminal Information Center database. The database is the key resource for the government to conduct background checks on people who go to purchase guns.
The Holloman Air Force Base Office of Special Investigations — the base where Kelley was stationed — was supposed to enter this information into the database, according to a statement released Monday night by the Air Force.
Kelley, who was armed with several firearms, fled the scene of the massacre he carried out Sunday but ended up taking his own life at the end of a high-speed car chase by two local residents.
The 26-year old Texan received a bad conduct discharge from the military in 2014 after being court-martialed in 2012 for assaulting his wife and reportedly fracturing his stepson’s skull on purpose.
He was convicted on two charges of domestic assault, served 12 months in confinement at the Naval Consolidated Brig in California, and was later given a bad-conduct discharge.
At issue is the Lautenberg Amendment enacted by Congress in 1996. The federal law was designed to prohibit people convicted of domestic violence from buying or possessing a firearm, regardless of whether the crime was a felony or a misdemeanor.
“The Air Force has launched a review of how the Service handled the criminal records of former Airman Kelley,” the U.S. Air Force said in the statement. The statement also noted the Air Force will investigate all its databases “to ensure records in other cases have been reported correctly.”
According to Fox News, the Air Force said it’s asked the Pentagon inspector general to “review records and procedures across the Department of Defense.”