In yet another case of a church shooting in the United States, a pastor at a Baptist church was shot dead in front of several attendees on Sunday morning. The incident happened at St. Peters Missionary Baptist Church just after 12:30 p.m. Sunday.
According to WDTN News, the Dayton Police Department received information about the church shooting in the area, and responded to the call within minutes. They have not released the name of the pastor who was killed. However, several witnesses confirmed that the pastor was shot dead by his own brother, whose name also has not been released at the time of publishing this report.
#BREAKING: Pastor Murdered During Church Service in Ohio
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According to a New York Daily News report, there were around 20 people inside the church at the time of the shooting incident. Witnesses told reporters that they were in the church and the church choir was singing. The deceased pastor had just walked back to the pulpit when the brother of the pastor, who was seated in a pew, got up and followed him to the pulpit. Seconds later, they heard shots ringing from there. Chaos ensued soon, and everyone inside the church ran for their safety. The shooter remained inside the church and, after police officials arrived on the scene, arrested him and placed him in the back of a police cruiser.
The motive behind the church shooting has not been revealed. An investigation is currently underway. We will update this report as and when we get more details.
We now have more information regarding the attack. The name of the pastor has been revealed as The Rev. William B. Schooler, 70. The local police department has arrested his brother, 68-year-old Daniel Gregory Schooler soon after the incident. Daniel was taken to the Montgomery County jail where he was charged with murder. He is set to appear in court on Monday, a senior official identified as Sgt. Richard Blommel told reporters. They are still ascertaining the cause of the incident. However, they did add that the gunman did not intended to kill anyone else.
Meanwhile, a relative of the brothers, Joyce Napier who happens to be a niece of the murdered pastor told that the accused has s history of mental illness. She says the mental illness could have played a role in the shooting. In an interview to local reporters, she said;
“I would think it has to be something’s going on in his head to do something like that, because we were raised to love. Family matters — that’s the way were raised.”
According to ABC News, apart from being a pastor, William Schooler at the time of his death held the position of the president of the local Baptist ministers union. In the past, he was the interim president of the Dayton school board as well. Earlier in his career, William Schooler worked as a teacher in the Dayton school district. This was in the 70s. Subsequently, he served as a principal in the Jefferson Township district where he worked for over two decades. Schooler was also known for being a community man and held positions in several other organizations.
Ronnie Moreland, a friend of the deceased recollects his memory;
“He had deep roots in the community. He was a beloved leader. It’s hard to put into words what has happened.”
According to Dayton City Commissioner Joey Williams, it was extremely disturbing to see Schooler becoming the victim of a violent crime. He recalls how Schooler had discussed with him several ways to reduce violence in the community.
“For him to be a victim of violence is just extremely saddening,” Williams said.