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Parishioner dead after man opens fire in church in BC Interior: RCMP

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DH Vancouver Staff Apr 14, 2019 7:03 pm

One person is dead and another seriously wounded after a man allegedly walked into a church and opened fire in a small town in BC’s Southern Interior on Sunday.

The Salmon Arm Church of Christ was hosting an event in the morning around 10:30 am when police responded to a report of a possible shooting.

“Police attended and entered the church immediately to determine that two individuals were seriously wounded and required urgent medical assistance,” says a statement from RCMP.

Both victims were parishioners, say Mounties. One was declared dead at the scene, while the other was taken to hospital in serious condition.

Church elder Gordon Parmenter has been identified online as the deceased. A listing on the church’s website describes Parmenter as a member of its leadership, and was married with four children. He also had numerous foster children.

The suspect, a 25-year-old man, was taken into custody after being “wrestled to the ground by a number of the parishioners.”

A rifle was seized at the scene.

Charges are expected against the male suspect.

Sgt. Scott West, Salmon Arm RCMP Detachment Commander, said there is no reason to believe that there is any ongoing threat to public safety.

“Police have determined that at least one of the victims was known to the suspect, and it is not believed at this time the event was religiously motivated,” West said in a statement.

The fatal shooting is being probed by the Salmon Arm RCMP, with the assistance of the Southeast District Major Crime Unit.

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