If the police had not acted quickly enough, more victims might have fallen from the mass shooting in downtown Dayton, Ohio, on Sunday morning, Aug. 4, in which the shooter was recognized as a registered Democrat.
In a press conference on Sunday afternoon, Dayton Police Chief Richard Biehl shared the story of his team in dealing with Connor Betts, the alleged gunman who killed nine people and injured 27 others in a crowded section of city, according to an NPR report.
Biehl said Dayton’s on-duty officers first heard shots at 1:05 a.m. as they were patrolling the city just before local bars closed their doors.
Within only about 20 seconds, six officers were running toward the hail of bullets pouring from the shooter’s .223-caliber high capacity rifle with 100-round drum magazines.
“They engaged a suspect who was actively firing and attempting to enter a crowded liquor establishment,” Biehl said.
Ten seconds later, the gunman was shot dead. A shotgun that had not been discharged lay beside him. He was wearing a mask, a bulletproof vest, and hearing protection.
“The threat was neutralized at approximately 30 seconds of the suspect firing his first shot,” Biehl retold.
The police chief said Betts was 24 years old and has a minimal criminal history as an adult—only a pair of traffic violations on his record. Both rifle and shotgun were purchased legally, with the first weapon was ordered online from Texas and transferred to the suspect from a local firearms dealer, and the second was purchased in Ohio.
“There’s nothing in this individual’s history or record that would have precluded him from purchasing that firearm,” Biehl explained.
These clues partially support comments from some Republican officials, including Texas Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick and House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, who blamed the attacks on violent video games.
And while Democrats are pointing the finger of blame at President Donald Trump and Republicans, the Greene County Board of Elections reveals that Connor Betts was a registered Democrat who has voted in seven previous elections, including two Democratic primaries.
The shooting left nine deaths, including: Megan K. Betts (Connor’s sister), Nicholas P. Cumer, Thomas J. McNichols, Lois L. Oglesby, Logan M. Turner, Beatrice N. Warren-Curtis, Saeed Saleh, Monica E. Brickhouse, and Derrick R. Fudge.
As of Sunday afternoon, authorities confirmed 12 of the 27 people injured were still in the hospital, and one of them was in critical condition.