A man carrying a large American flag and what appeared to be a sidearm arrived at the scene of a mass shooting at Santa Fe High School in Texas that killed at least nine people saying he was there to “make America great again” and offer “support.”
Video shows local television reporters interviewing the unidentified man, who was wearing a Trump 2016 campaign hat and who arrived shortly after the tragic shooting Friday that has left at least nine students and one teacher dead, according to officials.
“What was going through your head when you found out that this was going on?” one reporter asked.
“Get to the school, make America great again,” said the man identified by NBC-affiliate KPRC-TV as Brent Delucia.
“By doing what? What was your plan of action?” she continued.
“Offering support. Just a ‘God bless y’all’ will go a long way right now for a lot of people,” Delucia said before walking away.
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In a second interview with KPRC-TV Delucia said he was there to protect the victims.
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“There’s two kinds of people. There is those that want to pray with Jesus and help the community. And there are those who want to prey upon the victims,” he said. “I’m here to make sure none of that happens.”
A second man who identified himself as a father of a student at the high school called the armed Trump supporter an “embarrassment.”
“This idiot is walking down the street with a damn pistol on his side where we just had kids get shot,” he said.
The man said he was “a gun rights person” who owns guns, yet he criticized the decision to bring a gun to the site of a school shooting.
“This idiot is walking down here and saying he needs to make America great again. That’s not what America needs right now. America needs prayers.”
“I hope they get him. This is a crime scene. This is an embarrassment.”
Harris County Sheriff Ed Gonzalez said there were anywhere between eight and 10 fatalities at the school. Most of them were students.
“There’s one suspect in custody, a second possible person of interest that was detained,” the sheriff said at a news conference. “There are multiple fatalities confirmed. The number varies. It can be anywhere between eight to 10 fatalities at the school, including students and some adult staff as well.”
Police responded to a call of shots fired inside Santa Fe High School in Galveston County at around 8 a.m. local time. An officer was also injured, according to officials.