Woman Opens Fire in Joel Osteen's Megachurch

A boy and a man are hurt, and the shooter is dead in Texas
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 11, 2024 6:33 PM CST
Woman Opens Fire in Joel Osteen's Megachurch
In this screen grab taken from video provided by KTRK-TV ABC13, authorities respond to a shooting at Lakewood Church, the Houston megachurch of celebrity pastor Joel Osteen, Sunday, Feb. 11, 2024.   (KTRK-TV ABC13 via AP)

Houston police are sorting out the details after a shooting at celebrity pastor Joel Osteen's megachurch on Sunday. Police say the female shooter was killed, and a young boy and a man were injured, reports KPRC. What we know:

  • A woman holding a rifle and carrying a young boy entered Osteen's Lakewood Church about 2pm and opened fire, say police. CNN reports that an off-duty Houston police officer and an off-duty agent with the Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission returned fire and fatally struck the woman.
  • The AP reports that the 5-year-old boy who was being carried by the woman was critically injured, and a 57-year-old man was shot in the leg. It was not yet clear whether they were shot by the woman or the off-duty officers.

  • There was no immediate word on a motive for the woman, who has not been identified and was thought to be in her early 30s, per NBC Dallas Fort Worth. The woman, clad in a trench coat, also shouted that she had explosives, but police found none in her backpack or vehicle.
  • "I want to commend those officers. She had a long gun and it could have been a lot worse," said Houston Police Chief Troy Finner. "But they stepped up and they did their job, and I want to thank them for that."
  • Osteen said the shooting took place between services. "I can only imagine if it would have happened during the 11 o'clock service," he said. Roughly 45,000 people attend weekly services at the church, per the AP.
(More Joel Osteen stories.)

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