Lawsuit claims soldier’s gun access led to murder-suicide in Killeen
By Claire Ricke
Published: February 22, 2017
KILLEEN, Texas (KXAN) — One day away from the two year anniversary of a Killeen murder-suicide, a family is suing the U.S. government for failing to report a Fort Hood soldier’s restraining order violations, which allowed him to purchase a gun.
In the lawsuit filed at an Austin federal court, the family claims weapon access led to the murder of three people and suicide of the soldier. In February 2015, police say, Atase Giffa shot and killed his wife and two neighbors before killing himself.
According to the lawsuit, days before the murders Giffa and his wife were arguing, which escalated when he grabbed and threw her. Giffa’s wife Dawn was told by Killeen police to notify her husband’s commander about the incident. While she called the commander, Dawn and her son went to a neighboring home to find safety.
The commander told Dawn that Giffa would be on a 48-hour watch and constrained to the barracks for seven days as well as having a restraining order filed against him, states the lawsuit. Fort Hood is accused by the lawsuit of not recording Giffa’s restraining order violations in the crime datebase that would have made it harder for him to buy a gun. The lawsuit does not state where Giffa bought the gun.
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