Air Force Failed To Inform FBI Of Texas Shooter’s Violent, Troubled Past

General David Goldfein
That was a very costly mistake.

On Monday, the Air Force admitted that they failed to share the proper records with the FBI of Texas Church Shooter Devin Kelley’s history of violent behavior.

26-year-old shooter, Devin P. Kelley was court martialed by the Air Force in 2012, over a domestic violence incident, but this charge – one that should have barred him from passing a firearms background check – was never recorded in the FBI’s databases. Since the time of his domestic violence court martial, Kelley was able to obtain at least 4 additional firearms (that he should, by existing law, not have been able to obtain).

Ann Stefanek, an Air Force spokesperson said, during the press announcement, “Initial information indicates that Kelley’s domestic violence offense was not entered into the National Criminal Information Center database by the Holloman Air Force Base Office of Special Investigations,”.

The shooter, a 26-year-old Devin P. Kelley, was court-martialed in year 2012 for what Stefanek said was “assault on his spouse and assault on their child.” For his conduct he was sentenced to 12 months in the military prison for the assault and further received a demotion to the Air Force’s lowest rank. His assault had resulted in serious injuries to the child in question.

“He assaulted his stepson severely enough that he fractured his skull, and he also assaulted his wife,” Don Christensen, a retired colonel who was the chief prosecutor for the Air Force, said. “He pled to intentionally doing it.”

The Air Force also had confirmed that Kelley’s court-martial had made him ineligible to purchase or possess any firearms.

“Federal law prohibited him from buying or possessing firearms after this conviction,” Stefanek added.

However, as the Air Force had failed to notify the FBI of Kelley’s court-martial, he was still able to purchase more firearms from any licensed gun dealer and had easily passed the required background checks. The ATF said on Monday that he had successfully purchased the firearms used in the shooting that left at least 26 dead and dozens more injured from the licensed gun dealers in Texas and Colorado between years 2014 and 2016.

The Air Force said that it has directed its inspector general to begin a review of why Kelley’s court-martial records were never shared with the FBI and if any other court-martial records were incorrectly withheld from the systems.

“Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. David Goldfein directed a complete review of the Kelley case by the Air Force Office of the Inspector General,” Stefanek concluded. “The Service will also conduct a comprehensive review of Air Force databases to ensure records in other cases have been reported correctly. The Air Force has also requested that the Department of Defense Inspector General review records and procedures across the Department of Defense.”