Texas church shooter's father breaks silence, 'We are grieving'

The father of Texas church shooter Devin Kelley broke his silence on Wednesday to say his family was in mourning.

Michael Kelley, who lives just 35 miles away from Sutherland Springs, where his son killed 25 people and an unborn child at the First Baptist Church, told ABC, "We are grieving, our family is grieving."

The 26-year-old shot himself in the head after he sustained two gunshot wounds from Stephen Willeford, who grabbed his rifle when he heard shots ring out inside the church.

The gunman’s father declined to comment any further on Wednesday, saying, “I don’t want our lives, our grandchildren’s lives, destroyed by this media circus.”

What we know about the Texas shooting suspect:

11 PHOTOS
What we know about Texas church shooting suspect Devin Kelley
See Gallery
What we know about Texas church shooting suspect Devin Kelley

Devin Patrick Kelley is accused of killing more than two dozen people in a shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas.

(Texas Department of Safety/Handout via REUTERS)

The 26-year-old live in this home in New Braunfels, Texas.

(REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman)

He was a member of the U.S. Air Force before discharged and court-martialed for reportedly assault his first wife and child.

(Photo by Ian Hitchcock/Getty Images)

Officials said Kelley was involved in a domestic dispute with the family of  a woman he married in 2014.

(Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

He worked at Schlitterbahn Waterpark and Resort.

(Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

Kelley used an AR-556 rifle and wore tactical gear during the attack, according to authorities.

(Photo Illustration by George Frey/Getty Images)

Two ex-girlfriends told NBC News that Kelley stalked them after breakups.

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

Devin Patrick Kelley attended high school at New Braunfels High School.

(Photo by Erich Schlegel/Getty Images)

Authorities said Kelley called his father during the chase to say he had been shot and might not survive. He was later found dead in his vehicle. 

(Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

A former schoolmate of Kelley told Reuters that he shared posts on Facebook about atheism and his assault weapon in recent years.

(Daniel Acker/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Three days after the worst mass shooting in Texas history, authorities are reviewing video footage from inside the church.

The church regularly recorded its services, and there was “no one to turn [the camera] off” when Kelley opened fire, according to a law enforcement official who has seen the video.

Authorities have also obtained Kelley’s locked iPhone, although investigators have not yet been able to access the contents.

In a statement Wednesday evening, Apple said it’s offered the FBI technical advice after learning the bureau was trying to access the phone. The company said the FBI had not requested its assistance.

Depending on the model of iPhone and what security features it had, FBI agents might have had a short window to use alternative methods to access its data.

For instance, if the iPhone used Apple’s Touch ID fingerprint sensing system, agents could have tried placing the dead gunman’s finger on the phone to unlock it. But that would only have worked within 48 hours of the last time the phone was locked.

Meanwhile, more details emerged about the gunman’s past.

School records showed that Kelley was a disciplinary problem in high school, and his grades slipped with each passing year at New Braunfels High School.

A former friend said Kelley asked her for sexual favors and prevented his first wife from communicating with her friends.

Kelsey Huckaby told Austin television station KTBC that Kelley was “kind of controlling of his girlfriends” in high school.

RELATED: Some of the victims of the Texas shooting

19 PHOTOS
Some of the victims of the Texas church shooting
See Gallery
Some of the victims of the Texas church shooting
Haley Krueger was described as a beautiful and vibrant girl who had dreams of becoming a NICU nurse, according to a GoFundMe set up in her memory. She was 16. 

(Photo via GoFundMe)
Annabelle Pomeroy was the daughter of the pastor of the First Baptist Church. Both of her parents were out of town at the time of shooting. She was 14 years old. 

(Photo via Facebook)

Eight members of the same family were killed in the shooting, including Crystal Holcombe, who was pregnant. Three of her kids and her unborn child were also killed.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Megan Hill, 9

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Gregory Hill, 13

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Emily Hill, 11

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Dennis Johnson Sr. and his wife Sara had celebrated their 44th wedding anniversary in July and were members of the church for more than a decade, according to a fundraising page created in their memory.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Bryan Holcombe and his wife Karla Plain Holcombe, were both victims of the mass shooting. Bryan was an associate pastor at the church and was reported'y preparing to lead the congregation in mass when the shooting began.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Tara Elyse McNulty was remembered as a 'sweet, kind and loving woman, mother and daughter' on a GoFundMe page created in her memory. Her kids were reportedly injured in the shooting, but survived. 

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Lula Woicinski White was the gunman's grandmother-in-law. Her sister told the New York Daily News that 'she loved the people in her church. They were all her best friends.' She was 71.

(Photo via Facebook)

Joann Ward reportedly died while trying to use herself as a shield to protect her four young children.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Brooke was killed along with her mother, Joann Ward, and her older sister. She was 5 years old.

(Photo via GoFundMe)

Emily Garza, 7

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Shani Corrigan and her husband Robert Corrigan

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Richard Rodriguez attended church every Sunday, according to his daughter. He was 51 years old.

(Social media/Handout via REUTERS)

Therese Sagan Rodriguez was killed along with her husband, Richard. She was 66. 
Robert and Karen Marshall were new to Texas and trying out churches when they were killed in Sutherland Springs… https://t.co/vDn9EeYHJA
Peggy Lynn Warden https://t.co/qkj3Vqg0SO #KSATnews https://t.co/XRLt20hg8M
HIDE CAPTION
SHOW CAPTION
of
SEE ALL
BACK TO SLIDE

Huckaby said she lost contact with Kelley until he responded to a Facebook post she made in April asking for a place to stay for her and her boyfriend. She said Kelley offered to let them stay in a trailer on his property if she performed weekly “sexual favors” for him.

Vice President Mike Pence arrived in Texas on Wednesday, visiting wounded victims at a San Antonio hospital and later meeting families of the dead in Floresville, not far from Sutherland Springs.

With News Wire Services.

Read Full Story

Sign up for Breaking News by AOL to get the latest breaking news alerts and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

Subscribe to our other newsletters

Emails may offer personalized content or ads. Learn more. You may unsubscribe any time.