Nashville school shooting: Republican congressmen demand AG Garland launch hate crime investigation

Nashville police bodycam shows officers arrive at the Covenant School

Exclusive: two Republican members of Congress They are calling for the Department of Justice to investigate Monday’s shooting that left six dead at a Christian private school in Nashville as a hate crime.

The Nashville Police Department said Audrey Hill entered the Covenant shooting school through a locked glass door around 10:13 a.m. Monday and was armed with two rifles and a handgun.

Three students, all nine years old, were killed in the shooting: Haley Scruggs, Evelyn Dichhaus, and William Kenny. Three employees of the school were also killed: Principal Kathryn Consey, 60, substitute teacher Cynthia Beck, 61, and bouncer Mike Hill, 61.

Hale, a 28-year-old transgender woman who was a former student at Covenant School, was killed after she began shooting at the responding officers.

The Nashville-sponsored Covenant School suffers from the “terror that shattered our school and our church”

A police officer walks through the entrance of Covenant School after a shooting in Nashville, Tennessee, on Monday, March 27, 2023.

A police officer walks through the entrance of Covenant School after a shooting in Nashville, Tennessee, on Monday, March 27, 2023. (AP Photo/John Amis)

Law enforcement officers found graffiti and hand-drawn diagrams of the school indicating that the shooting was “calculated and planned.”

In a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland, Rep. Lance Gooden, R-Texas, and Rep. Andy Ogles, R-Ten. He said the Justice Department needs to open a hate crime investigation into the Covenant school shooting.

A police officer comforts a mourner outside Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee on Tuesday, March 28, 2023. On Monday, six people — three adults and three children — were killed inside the school in a mass shooting.

A police officer comforts a mourner outside Covenant School in Nashville, Tennessee on Tuesday, March 28, 2023. On Monday, six people — three adults and three children — were killed inside the school in a mass shooting. (KR/Mega for Fox News Digital)

This week, America watched as a psychopathic shooter brutally massacred Christian schoolchildren in… Nashville, Tennessee. This killer, identified by law enforcement as Audrey Hill, shot and killed six people—three students, Evelyn Dickhouse, Haley Scruggs, and William Kenny, and three staff members Cynthia Beck, Katherine Cons, and Michael Hill—while they were studying and working at The Covenant School. Police reports confirmed what many Americans had already suspected. “This attack was a targeted attack on American Christians,” the members of Congress wrote.

The congresswoman also described it as “awful” that neither of them had been opened yet.

Nashville Covenant School Head Reprised As Hero Wake Up From Shooting: ‘She Protected Her Kids’

Representative Lance Gooden, a Texas Republican, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas, Texas, United States, on Sunday, July 11, 2021. The three-day conference is titled "America is not canceled."

Rep. Lance Gooden, R-Texas, speaks during the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in Dallas, Texas, US, on Sunday, July 11, 2021. The three-day conference is titled “America Uncancelled.” (Photographer: Dylan Hollingsworth/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

“Federal law is clear, and acts of violence against individuals based on religious affiliation are hate crimes,” Gooden and Uglis wrote in the letter. “the [shooter] He was a former student of the Covenant School and specifically chose to terrorize this school because of their Christian faith. It is appalling that you have not yet committed to a hate crime investigation even though the motive for the shooting is as clear as today.”

Nashville School Shooting: AUDREY HALE Police Released Bodies

Rep.-Elect Andy Ogles, R-Tennessee, right, and Rep. Barry Moore, R-Ala., arrive for the House Republican leadership election at the Capitol Visitor Center on Tuesday, November 15, 2022.

Rep.-Elect Andy Ogles, R-Tennessee, right, and Rep. Barry Moore, R-Ala., arrive for the House Republican leadership election at the Capitol Visitor Center on Tuesday, November 15, 2022. (Tom Williams/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

“We urge you, as the head of the Department of Justice, to immediately provide the full resources of federal law enforcement to the victims and their community of this attack and to open a hate crime investigation. In addition, we urge you to strongly condemn anti-Christian bias to send an unequivocal message to all Americans that discrimination is against Any community is un-American and will not be tolerated. Furthermore, we ask that you update us regularly on steps the Department has taken to address our concerns. Thank you for your concern. This is important.”

Gooden said the shooting should be described as a “hate crime”.

“The direct targeting of Christian schoolchildren must be classified for what it is: a hate crime designed to defame and slaughter believers in Christ and pacify religious practices in America. The full weight of the federal government must be unleashed, and decisions made about how this crime happened, and who affected this person who is a convert.” The sexually deranged cut off America’s Christian children in their offices,” Gooden said.

Ogles called the shooting a “senseless massacre”.

“The Covenant School shooter in Nashville committed an outrageous hate crime that should not be tolerated. It specifically targeted the catechism place I once attended and stole the lives of six innocent people,” Ogles said. “Attorney General Garland and the Department of Justice need to work quickly to investigate this alarmingly senseless massacre. This was not a ‘cry for help’, it was an act fueled by hate.”

In a statement released Tuesday, Covenant School said their “community is heartbroken.”

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“We grieve the tremendous loss and trauma of the horror that shattered our school and our church. We focus on The love of our studentsand our families, faculty, and staff and begin the healing process,” Covenant School said.

The Department of Justice did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Fox News Digital.

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