Seth Ator has been identified as the accused gunman who was shot and killed by police after a rampage in Odessa and Midland, Texas, according to the Odessa Police Department. Police said the shooter was taken down by officers at the Cinergy movie complex in Odessa. The incident began around 3:15 p.m. local time on Saturday, August 31, as an attempted traffic stop along Interstate 20.
Police had originally been looking for two potential gunmen. But after Ator was shot, officials stated that there was no longer a threat of an active shooter. Investigators now say they are confident the gunman acted alone.
Seven victims were killed in Saturday’s rampage, according to federal officials. More than 20 others were injured, several critically. Three law enforcement officers who were injured, including the state trooper who was shot during the traffic stop, are expected to recover.
Ator was 36 years old. Police stated in the press conference earlier Sunday that the gunman had a home address in Ector County, and records confirmed that Ator lived in Odessa. KMID-TV reported that FBI investigators were seen executing a search warrant at Ator’s house Sunday afternoon.
Ator had a Toyota Tercel registered to his name.
Odessa Police were asked during Sunday’s press conference if the gunman had a prior arrest history. They answered at the time that the suspect had prior cases that had come up during a search of his driver’s license.
According to a statewide criminal history search on the Texas Department of Public Safety’s website, Seth Ator was charged with “Criminal Trespass” on August 3, 2001, in McLennan County, Texas. It was a Class B Misdemeanor.
He was then charged with a second offense for Evading Arrest. The record shows that Ator issued a guilty plea in February of 2002 and received a sentence of 24 months on probation. The site does not provide further details as to what prompted the arrest.
The case was listed as a “deferred adjudication.” In the state of Texas, it’s a type of probation in which the conviction is kept off the defendant’s criminal record.