Trump says ‘we don’t know if the shooting was an act of terror or a hate crime’


President Donald Trump on Saturday said he had no evidence the shooting at a Republican congressional baseball practice was an attempt to “terrorize” the community, a statement that came after an Associated Press investigation found no evidence that the gunman had targeted anyone specific.

Trump, who has been criticized for not releasing the names of the dead and injured, said in a tweet Saturday that he “wanted to get the facts out” before he made a statement.

“We have no information to indicate that this was an attack on the Republican members of Congress or on our fellow Americans,” he wrote.

“But I want the facts, so we can make informed decisions about how to move forward.”

Rep. Mark Meadows, R-N.C., who was in attendance during the baseball practice, told CNN’s Jim Acosta he did not know if it was a “targeted attack.”

“We’re still investigating and the investigation is still ongoing,” he said.

“If there is an attack, we will get to the bottom of it.”

Trump tweeted that “there is no evidence to suggest that the shooting of our fellow American was a terrorist attack.”

He added that he hoped the incident “can serve as a wake-up call for our country.”

On Thursday, House Speaker Paul Ryan called the shooting a “hate crime.”

“I want to express my deepest sympathies to the families and friends of the victims of this horrific shooting and to the congressional baseball team,” he tweeted.

“This attack on our country is an assault on the freedoms we cherish.

We cannot let this happen again.”

The gunman, identified as 24-year-old James Alex Fields Jr., is charged with malicious wounding and first-degree murder in the shooting.

Trump’s tweets were his latest reaction to the violence.

On Saturday, Trump tweeted that he had “nothing to add” about the shooting that took place outside the White House.

He added that the administration is “reviewing our policies to better protect the innocent and make sure we do everything possible to protect our country and protect our police officers.”

On Sunday, the Whitehouse said in an interview with NBC’s “Meet the Press” that Trump has “not given us any information on this.”

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