Published: Thu, May 24, 2018
Worldwide | By Gretchen Simon

Texas leaders mull more security, mental health screenings to prevent shootings

Texas leaders mull more security, mental health screenings to prevent shootings

In February, a gunman killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

Teachers returned to work on Wednesday.

Patrick said that as he visited a hospital on Friday night where some of those wounded in the shooting had been treated, students and parents alike said that teachers should be armed. Her group will stress tougher background checks, suicide prevention, gun safety at home and so-called "red flag" laws that restrict gun access for people identified as potentially risky to themselves or others. The school district issued a statement saying it investigated the accusations and "confirmed that these reports were untrue".

The alliance said in a Facebook post that the event will include "worship, words of encouragement and prayers for all of the families who are grieving".

Abbott will meet with two dozen people, including supporters and opponents of arming teachers, following the fourth-deadliest USA school shooting this year at Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas on Friday.

Just two days after the deaths of eight students and two substitute teachers, graduating seniors also marked the end of the school year with a baccalaureate service that acknowledged the pain experienced in Santa Fe, a town of 13,000, while Muslim mourners remembered the life of a slain exchange student from Pakistan.

Mourners knelt before white wooden crosses on Monday outside the Texas high school where 10 people were killed in the fourth deadly US school shooting this year, an image recalling similar gatherings after February's Florida school massacre.

Abbott, a Republican, has vowed that any changes to state laws would "protect Second Amendment rights".

Texas Gun Sense, which advocates for tighter gun controls, was invited to Wednesday's meeting, said the group's executive director, Gyl Switzer.

Abbott says he wants to keep guns away from people "who would try to murder our children".

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"We are dying on your watch".

Calls for tighter gun regulations in the USA have been prominent following the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting in Parkland, Florida on Valentine's Day, where 17 students and teachers were killed. The letter was first published as an ad in the Houston Chronicle.

Even before Friday's shooting, several Republican politicians, including Texas Gov. Greg Abbott and Sen.

"The problem is that innocent people are being shot and that must be stopped", Abbott, a staunch gun rights supporter, told reporters before the meeting that lasted more than two hours and was held behind closed doors.

But few expect the meetings to result in any major push for new gun restrictions, especially in a state where more than 1.2 million people are licensed to carry handguns and are allowed to openly carry them in public if they wish.

Police have said the 17-year-old suspect in the Santa Fe shooting used his father's shotgun and.38-caliber handgun.

Texas courts are supposed to tell law enforcement if a person taken in for a mental health evaluation has been ordered into a mental hospital. The teen didn't own firearms of his own, he said.

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo has been pointed in his response to the violence in nearby Santa Fe.

"Sabika's case should become an example to change the gun laws", Sheikh said in a phone interview.

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