El Paso Walmart shooting suspect won't face death penalty on federal charges

Federal prosecutors will not seek the death penalty against the man accused of fatally shooting 23 people at a Walmart in El Paso, Texas, in 2019.

Authorities say Patrick Crusius drove across the state before opening fire with an assault-style rifle on Aug. 3, 2019, at the El Paso Walmart Supercenter, which is located near the U.S.-Mexico border.

He faces federal charges including 23 counts of hate crime resulting in death and 23 counts of use of a firearm to commit murder. 

Crusius has pleaded not guilty, and his attorney indicated in previous court filings that he “has been diagnosed with severe, lifelong neurological and mental disabilities.”

A federal trial is scheduled for early next year. Crusius also faces state capital murder charges and could face the death penalty in that case.

The federal indictment alleges Crusius prior to the shooting drafted a document titled, “The Inconvenient Truth,” that claimed of a Hispanic “invasion” of Texas and indicated the shooting was in response to “cultural and ethnic replacement.”

Crusius was indicted in federal court in February 2020, but the proceedings were delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

A federal grand jury returned a superseding indictment in July 2020 after a 23rd victim died in the hospital months after the shooting.

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