When a gunman walked into the Taiwanese church in Orange County and opened fire , the pastor of the church hit him over the head and then the congregation hogtied the killer.
The gunman went on a shooting spree during a luncheon at the Irvine Taiwanese Presbyterian Church in Laguna Woods, California. As of now, one has been killed and five more senior citizen worshipers were injured.
There is no known motive currently for the shooting, but the shooter was in his 60s and Asian. Investigators don’t believe the man lives in the local community. He gained access to the luncheon by saying that he was an attendee.
Authorities say that the shooting ended after the gunman was rushed by the congregants when he was forced to reload and hogtied with an electrical cord until they arrived. The Pastor Billy Chang hit him over the head with a chair as others grabbed his gun.
A congregant named Jerry Chen, 72, was in the kitchen when he heard gunshots and saw people screaming, running and hiding.
“I knew someone was shooting,’ he said. ‘I was very, very scared. I ran out the kitchen door to call 911.”
Chen called the police from the parking lot and was so in shock that he had to “ask someone else for the address” despite him being a regular at the Church.
There was a luncheon that day with 40 people that were there to welcome former Pastor Billy Chang, who had headed the church for 20 years. He returned to Taiwan two years ago but was visiting the United States at the time.
For lunch, they had a bento box with teriyaki chicken. Chen said that “they were taking photos with Pastor Chang” when it began.
“It was amazing how brave (Chang) and the others were,’ he said speaking about the pastor’s bravery. ‘This is just so sad. I never, ever thought something like this would happen in my church, in my community.”
Those critically wounded include four men, ages 66,75,82, and 92, and a woman, 86. One person suffered fatal wounds and died at the scene.
They injured were rushed to Providence Mission Hospital, UC Irvine Medical Center, and two more were sent to Orange County Global Medical Center, said Daily Mail. One of the injured was 92-years old and suffered being grazed by a bullet.
Police said that the congregants showed “exceptional heroism and bravery in detaining the suspect.”
“They undoubtedly prevented additional injuries and fatalities,” Orange County Undersheriff Jeff Hallock told the press. “I think it’s safe to say that had people not intervened, it could have been much worse.”
Sheriff John Molina said that police are searching for a motive, but do not know if it was hate related. They do not know whether it was personal either.
Hallock said that they are waiting to hear if the shooter was “known to the congregants.”
What do you think his motivations were?