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Concerns Raised Over Gun Ownership by Joel Osteen Megachurch Shooting Suspect Despite Previous Calls for Help

In a chilling turn of events, a mother with a history of mental illness stormed Joel Osteen's megachurch with an AR-15. The shooting left two people injured, including her own son, and raises serious questions about mental health and gun laws.

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Bijay Laxmi
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Megachurch Shooting: A Mother's Desperate Act and the Unraveling of a Tragedy

Megachurch Shooting: A Mother's Desperate Act and the Unraveling of a Tragedy

In a chilling turn of events, a shooter identified as Genesse Ivonne Moreno stormed into Joel Osteen's megachurch in Texas, brandishing an AR-15 style rifle. The incident, which unfolded on February 13, 2024, left two people wounded, including Moreno's own young son who is currently fighting for his life in critical condition.

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A Mother's Desperate Act

Moreno, who had a documented history of mental illness, including violent schizophrenia, was reportedly involved in a bitter custody battle. Her former mother-in-law revealed that they had sought help from Child Protective Services (CPS) and the police on numerous occasions. Despite her history of violence and mental health issues, Moreno was legally permitted to purchase the firearm used in the shooting.

A Tragedy Unfolds at Lakewood Church

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As worshippers gathered at Lakewood Church, an unimaginable scene of chaos and panic erupted. Moreno entered the church with her 7-year-old son and opened fire. Off-duty officers quickly responded, engaging Moreno in a shootout that ultimately resulted in her death. Another man was also injured in the exchange of gunfire.

“She had a particular type of schizophrenia that caused her to become violent ... We asked for help from CPS ... We’ve asked for help from police, and received it many times. But she was still allowed to own guns," Former mother-in-law of Joel Osteen told a news reporter.

Unraveling the Tragedy

In the aftermath of the shooting, investigators discovered antisemitic writings connected to Moreno. Her use of multiple aliases and a string of arrests for minor offenses further complicated the picture of her life. The shooting has raised serious questions about the ability of individuals with a history of mental illness and violence to legally purchase firearms.

As Lakewood Church and the wider community grapple with the fallout of this tragic incident, one thing is clear: the shooting at Joel Osteen's megachurch has left an indelible mark on those affected and serves as a stark reminder of the ongoing challenges surrounding mental health and gun violence in America.

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