Shooter at Joel Osteen’s Church Identified

( – The woman who entered a megachurch in Texas with two rifles and opened fire has been identified as Genesse Ivone Moreno, who died at the scene of the incident. Moreno, dressed in a trench coat and accompanied by her 7-year-old son, walked into the church in Houston and began shooting. She was shot dead by the church’s security officers, but during the shoot-out, her son and a 57-year-old congregant were injured. The child was hit in the head and was taken to hospital in critical condition.

Initial reports suggested that Moreno was transgender, as she had previously registered for medical care under male aliases, but officers say that, to their knowledge, she has consistently identified as a female. Police also confirmed that she had a history of antisemitism, and the word “Palestine” was written across one of her rifles.

The 36-year-old had a lengthy criminal history and had been institutionalized for severe mental health problems. A relative posted on Facebook that she had a schizophrenia diagnosis but had stopped taking medication. The family member also said she had “raged” about the Middle East conflict between Israel and Hamas.

Commander Christopher Hassig of the Houston Police Department’s homicide division said the suspect entered the church armed with an AR-15 and a .22 caliber rifle, which some media reports say she purchased legally despite her criminal past.

Commander Hassig added that he believes there were family difficulties and a dispute between the suspect and her ex-husband’s family, who are Jewish.

Court records show that Moreno was arrested on unlawful weapons possession charges in 2022 and was released after two days. Her rap sheet goes back many years and includes an assault charge in 2009 and a marijuana possession arrest in 2010. The El Salvador native also has a history of forgery, theft, evading arrest, and causing bodily injury.

The Lakewood Church in Houston is one of the largest in the United States and was founded by prominent televangelist Joel Osteen.

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