San Antonio Police officers may have averted a mass-shooting at a state mental health hospital after an employee allegedly entered the facility while armed. The employee also reportedly had a “hit list” in his possession, along with a journal.
Officials with the San Antonio State Hospital called police after an employee reported seeing a weapon in another employee’s bag. The employees also said the man made what they interpreted as threatening comments, Fox29 San Antonio reported.
A police report conveyed to the local Fox affiliate by an unidentified source states that responding officers found a “loaded gun, ammunition, and a journal.”
Fox29 reports that U.S. Army officials told them the man is a member of the Texas National Guard. Hospital officials claim the man is scheduled to be deployed to Africa in the next few weeks.
The 29-year-old man, who is not being identified for health privacy reasons, allegedly told staff members he would be, “wearing a mask and cutting off power to the State Hospital.”
One of the entries in the man’s journal reportedly said, “I am a peaceful person, but there is a storm brewing inside of me.”
He later said, “people don’t understand how being deployed causes ‘f——‘ changes in people,” hospital staff told the source.
Police reportedly “emergency detained” the man and turned him over to the custody of State Hospital doctors and staff. No charges have been filed in the case at this time, Fox29 stated.
Employees of the hospital told the Fox29 reporter that firearms are not permitted inside the hospital. Despite this “gun-free zone” designation, the employee managed to bring the gun and ammunition inside the hospital for an entire shift before it was discovered.
Information about the man’s status to legally own or carry a firearm has not been reported.
State Hospital officials responded to questions about the gun and ammunition and said, “Our policy remains that staff are prohibited from carrying firearms onto campus. We do not search our employees as they enter their workplace.” Officials also disclosed they do not have a policy to disclose information about their patients to U.S. military officials.
Visitors to the State Hospital are required to pass through a metal detector before entering the facility.
Texas National Guard officials did not confirm to Fox29 any information about the man’s status with their organization.