North America

Texas church where 26 people died is to be demolished: pastor

The Southern Baptist Convention says the Texas church where more than two dozen people were gunned down, will be demolished.

The pastor of a small-town Texas church that was the site of a massacre plans to demolish the building.

Pastor Frank Pomeroy has told leaders of the Southern Baptist Convention it would be too painful to continue using First Baptist Church of Sutherland Springs as a place of worship.

A national Southern Baptist Convention spokesman says Pomeroy discussed the plan this week with the denomination's top executives who had travelled to the community in a show of support.

The spokesman says Pomeroy expressed hope he could turn the site into a memorial for the more than two dozen people who were killed last Sunday and build a new church on property the church owns.

Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence joined Texas Governor Greg Abbott at a memorial service for the victims of Sunday's massacre at a small-town Texas church.

Pence told the crowd on Wednesday evening that the shooting was the worst mass shooting at a church in American history and called the gunman "deranged".

Abbott began the service by praying "for healing and for help" and proclaimed Tuesday a statewide day of prayer.

Authorities say Devin Patrick Kelley killed 26 in the attack, including the unborn baby of one of the women slain.

Apple released a statement saying it has offered the FBI technical advice after learning the bureau was trying to access Kelley's mobile phone, but that the FBI had not requested its assistance.


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