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Davis, California

Thursday, April 18, 2024

Five dead after fatal shooting in Sacramento church

Authorities report that a father opened fire resulting in the death of his three children and unknown victim near the Arden Arcade area

By CHRIS PONCE  — city@theaggie.org

Content Warning: This article contains descriptions of a fatal shooting and violence which some readers may find disturbing.

On Feb. 28, local Sacramento authorities stated in a press conference that five people had been shot and killed at a church in Sacramento. The church was in the Arden Arcade area. Sergeant Rod Grassman, representing the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department, said that they received a call at approximately 5 p.m. regarding the shooting according to a broadcast clip posted by CBS Sacramento.

“At 5:07 p.m. this afternoon we received a call,” Grassman said. “There was a shooting inside the church.”

Authorities reported that five people total were killed, including the gunman. The Sacramento County’s Sheriff’s Department has not yet named the shooter. Authorities have announced that the suspect was a 39-year-old man and the victims included his three children and one currently unknown victim. 

Grassman stated that the children were all under the age of 15; they were 9, 10 and 13 years old. 

The suspect, after shooting his three children and the unknown victim, killed himself. The sheriff’s department is currently considering the shooting a domestic violence incident. 

Details on the fifth victim were limited, but Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones said the man was supervising the visit between the gunman and his children. It was not clear if the victim was a member of the church.

The reason the family was at the church is currently unknown. However, the officer at the press conference said that it is likely they were members of the church. The entire incident was contained to the church grounds and none of the victims or the suspect were transported by ambulance after the shooting, according to Grassman.

Grassman also reported that there were other people at the church during the incident. It is currently unknown if these people were members of the church or staff and leadership, according to Grassman

Grassman stated that they expected authorities to be present for the night of Feb. 28. On Twitter the Sacramento Sheriff’s Department warned that roads would be impacted and to avoid the area. 

“Howe and Ethan and Howe and Cottage have a large police presence due to a shooting , [sic] please avoid the area,” the tweet read. “The Sheriffs Office PIO will be at the command Post located at the Home Depot on Howe and cottage.”

This shooting is the 10th mass shooting in California this year. Governor Gavin Newsom made a statement on Twitter around 7 p.m. on the day of the shooting. 

“Another senseless act of gun violence in America – this time in our backyard,” the tweet read. “In a church with kids inside. Absolutely devastating. Our hearts go out to the victims, their families and their communities. We are working closely with local law enforcement.” 

This story is developing. Please check back for future updates. 

Written by: Chris Ponce — city@theaggie.org

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