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Police have identified 68-year-old David Chou as the suspected shooter behind the Laguna Woods, California, church shooting on Sunday.
“The suspect in the Laguna Woods church shooting has been identified as David Chou, 68 years old, of Las Vegas, NV. He has been booked on one felony count of murder and five felony counts of attempted murder,” the Orange County Sheriff’s office said Monday.
Gunshots rang out at Geneva Presbyterian Church in Laguna Woods, California, before 1:30 p.m. Sunday, and left one person fatally shot and five others injured.
Roughly 40 members of the congregation were gathered to eat lunch and meet with their former pastor, Billy Chang, who was making his first visit to the church since moving to Taiwan two years ago.
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“I heard the gun sounds,” Geneva Presbyterian Church congregant Jerry Chen, 72, said according to the Los Angeles Times. “Then I heard two or three more gunshots. He was just randomly shooting.”
Parishioners took cover on the ground during the shooting, while Chang was seen hitting the gunman with a chair as he stopped to reload his gun. Other churchgoers then tackled the suspect and hogtied him with an extension cord.
Chen told the LA Times that the congregation is composed of mostly elderly, retired Taiwanese immigrants, with an average age of 80.
Law enforcement sources previously said Chou had no clear connection to the church.
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The parishioners have since been lauded for their bravery by law enforcement officials for subduing the gunman.
“That group of churchgoers displayed what we believe is exceptional heroism and bravery,” Undersheriff Jeff Hallock said, according to the LA Times.
“It’s safe to say that had they not intervened this situation could have been much worse,” he added.
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Before services began Sunday, the parishioners greeted the gunman and welcomed him to their church. The gunman allegedly told members of the congregation that he had visited the church before, but no one recognized him, Chen recounted.
This is a breaking news post and will be updated.