GARLAND – The Draw Muhammad Cartoon Contest is no laughing matter in Garland. It apparently triggered a shootout at the Culwell Center a week ago that left two suspects dead and a security guard injured. But now, the question is: Could it have been prevented?
Garland Police Department says the FBI did send out an email about one of the shooter, Elton Simpson, 3 hours before the shooting took place. But Chief Mitch Bates wants to set the record straight.
"An email containing a general information bulletin regarding Simpson was sent by an FBI analyst to members of the local FBI Joint Terrorism Task Force, which includes one Garland Police detective," Bates said. "It did not contain any information that listed Simpson as a threat."
"Please note that the contents of that email would not have prevented the shooting nor would it have changed the law enforcement response in any fashion,” Bates said.
So why was a bulletin sent out in the first place?
"The bulletin was simply information regarding Mr. Simpson and his conduct from many years ago," Bates said. "We absolutely had no information that anyone including Simpson and Soofi were targeting this event. That did not exist, that did not happen; at all."
Newsfix asked the FBI to clarify who knew what when. They say they didn’t know Simpson was headed to Texas, but wanted to give Garland a heads-up he was a possible threat.
Hey, all we know for sure is that it looks like bad things seem to happen when folks draw the Prophet Muhammad.