What is schizophrenia? Questions linger on Lakewood Church shooter’s documented mental history

HOUSTON – As the investigation continues in Sunday’s Lakewood Church shooting, questions still remain about Genesse Moreno’s past, including a documented mental history.

KPRC 2′s Bryce Newberry spoke with Angelina Hudson with the National Alliance of Mental Illness in Greater Houston.

Documents revealed Moreno suffered from schizophrenia, a chronic brain disorder that affects how the person thinks, feels, and behaves.

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, those who suffer from schizophrenia feel like they have lost touch with reality.

“Most people with schizophrenia are not aggressive,” Hudson said. “They’re not the aggressor, you know, and so it’s sort of a bad rap to say, ‘oh, because she has schizophrenia, therefore she’s a threat to society because in this case that’s what’s happened.”

When Newberry asked if there were concerns about someone having untreated schizophrenia who’s able to purchase a gun, Hudson said the danger is not in the gun -- it’s the illness itself.

“You can have gun locks at home. You can have, you know, all of this preparation around protecting the gun. But I think the better issue of the better focus is what do we do to help treat people earlier along the mental wellness and mental illness continuum?” she said.

Symptoms of Schizophrenia:

  • Delusions (false beliefs that are not based in reality)
  • Hallucinations (Seeing or hearing things that do not exist)
  • Disorganized speech or thinking
  • Extremely disorganized or abnormal motor behavior
  • Negative symptoms (lack of ability to function normally)

To learn more on the illness and/or how to seek help, click here.

About the Authors

A graduate of the University of Houston-Downtown, Ana moved to H-Town from sunny southern California in 2015. In 2020, she joined the KPRC 2 digital team as an intern. Ana is a self-proclaimed coffee connoisseur, a catmom of 3, and an aquarium enthusiast. In her spare time, she's an avid video gamer and loves to travel.

Bryce Newberry joined KPRC 2 in July 2022. He loves the thrill of breaking news and digging deep on a story that gets people talking.

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