Starrville Methodist Church (More Facts)
According to the Smith County Sheriff, the fleeing suspect, who was hiding in the bathroom of the Texas church, disarmed a pastor with his own gun and shot the pastor to death.
The fiery death occurred at Starrville Methodist Church in Winona, Texas. Smith County Sheriff Larry Smith said at a press conference on January 3 that the suspect was hiding in the church because it was a “warm place to stay” after fleeing from authorities during an unrelated pursuit. The sheriff said the murder took place before a church service began.
That’s when the priest, whose name was not disclosed, confronted the suspect. The sheriff said he did not believe there was a religious motive for the murder. The names of the suspect and victims taken into custody have not been disclosed yet.
“If you’re going to carry a firearm, you must be willing to use it,” Smith said. This was an opportunity crime for the suspect. The church was there. ” Texas Governor Greg Abbott said in a statement: “Our hearts are with the victims and families of those who died and were injured in this terrible tragedy. I am grateful to the law enforcement who captured the suspect, and I ask the Texans to pray to Cecilia and me for those affected by this horrible attraction. ” The suspect is a 21-year-old man who was arrested at Marshall. A wreck outside the church sparked a chase. After the chase, the sheriff said the dogs “had been in the area for just over two hours and could not find the suspect.” The suspect was lost in the forest. This was before the murder. We did manhunt with dogs and drones, and we had quite a few staff for just over two hours,” the sheriff said. “Fast forward this morning (January 3rd).” Several people went to the church, including the priest and the pastor’s wife. “Nothing unusual.” But then the priest said, “He opened the bathroom door and opposed the individual. The priest had a firearm for him, he drew his firearm to the person and ordered him to stop, ”said the sheriff.
According to the sheriff, the suspect started to come towards the front door, turned around and neutralized the pastor. The firearm of the priest is the one he used. He said the priest was killed.
The suspect later stole the priest’s vehicle, but a proxy noticed it and was detained. The suspect has a gunshot wound on his hand, but it is not yet clear where it happened.
When the priest faced the suspect in the bathroom, he was holding a church bag. The sheriff said this and taking the priest’s vehicle made him a deadly murder investigation. The sheriff said, not counting the suspect, two people were injured by guns and one female victim was hospitalized for the fall. There were only four people in the church when the murder was committed.
“There was nothing to do with any religious belief,” the sheriff said. “The church was the place where he could enter and take shelter overnight after we left the scene.” He said that the actual tracking took place at 19:30. the night before.