David Chou, 68, is accused of opening fire at a Taiwanese town in Laguna Woods, California, on Sunday
Police say the Chinese man accused of shooting a Taiwanese person and injuring five others at her church in California on Sunday was motivated by “political tensions between China and Taiwan.”
David Chou, 68, is accused of opening fire at a Taiwanese congregation that had gathered at a church in Laguna Woods, about 50 kilometers southeast of Los Angeles.
He killed John Cheng, a 52-year-old doctor. He leaves behind a wife and two children.
The five injured were four men aged between 66 and 92 and an 86-year-old woman.
Four of the victims remain in critical condition.
Chou, who’s a fan Las Vegasis charged with one count of murder and five counts of attempted murder and is being held on $ 1 million bail.
At a press conference Monday afternoon, deputies revealed that the police officer was motivated by ethnicity of his victims.
Taiwan is a sovereign island nation about 100 kilometers off the coast of China. The small country is still claimed by China, although it has its own representation at the United Nations and is recognized as independent by 13 countries and the Vatican.
Chou even tried to super-glue the locks in an attempt to keep everyone inside during the rampage, deputies say.
A pastor hit Chou over the head with a chair shortly after he started his shooting sport. Older congregations, who say they have never seen him before, then took off his weapons and beat him with an electric cord until police arrived.
John Cheng was shot dead and killed in the shooting on Sunday at the church in California
Police have identified 68-year-old David Chou as a man who shot dead at a church in Southern California on Sunday afternoon
The congregation (some pictured together) were at the hall for lunch after morning service to welcome back their former pastor Billy Chang (pictured center, fourth from right) after returning to the US from Taiwan for the first time in two years
Deputies say Chou, who is Chinese, was motivated by an ‘individual grievance’ against the Taiwanese community. Above, detectives outside the Geneva Presbyterian Church
The shooting happened in the small town of Laguna Woods, about 55 miles south of Los Angeles
Chou is accused of carrying out the atrocity at Geneva Presbyterian Church.
The gray attack came one day after a white supremacist killed 10 people in a supermarket in upstate New York.
The policeman apparently does not live in the area. Public records show that he has been associated with a dozen different addresses since the late 1980s, indicating the possibility that he is a property investor, the Orange County Register reports.
Deputies now say the Chinese gunman was motivated by an ‘individual grievance’ against Taiwan, which recently complained about increased Chinese military presence in its airspace.
About 40 parishioners witnessed the violence on Sunday – but those present also helped prevent further bloodshed by overpowering and binding the shooter.
The shooting took place at 1.25pm at a luncheon in honor of former pastor Billy Chang, who had served the church for 20 years and was a beloved and respected member of the community.
Chang moved back to Taiwan two years ago. This was his first time back stateside.
Longtime churchgoer Jerry Chen, 72, had just stepped into the kitchen of the church’s community hall when he heard gunshots and church members were crying, running and ducking under the tables.
“I knew someone was shooting,” he said. ‘I was very, very scared. I ran out the kitchen door to call 911. ‘
Taiwanese hero Pastor Billy Chang (pictured) stabbed a gunman with a chair while senior citizens beat him after a shooting at the Irvine Taiwanese Presbyterian Church on Sunday, killing one and wounding five.
Chen, who called the emergency services from the church parking lot, said he was in such a state of shock that he could not tell the operator his location. “I had to ask someone else for the address,” he said.
Everyone had just finished lunch – a special bento box with teriyaki chicken.
Chen said, ‘They took pictures with Pastor Chang. I had just finished my afternoon and went into the kitchen. ‘ Then he heard the gunshots and jumped out.
Shortly afterwards, Chen said he heard the details of what was happening inside of others who came out. Colleagues told him that when the gunman stopped to reload, Pastor Chang hit him on the head with a chair while others quickly moved to grab his gun. Then they calmed him down and tied him up.
“It was amazing how brave (Chang) and the others were,” he said. ‘This is just so sad. I never, ever thought that would happen in my church, in my community. ‘
Most members of the church are elderly, highly educated Taiwanese immigrants, Chen said. ‘We are mostly retired and the average age of our church is 80.’
The policeman had apparently tried to slam the doors shut in an attempt to stop people from leaving when he knocked them down, public deputies said Monday.
All kinds of auxiliary cars were seen outside the church on Sunday afternoon
Longtime Congregation in Irvine Jerry Chen, 72, had just stepped into the kitchen of his church’s community hall when he heard gunshots and saw church members screaming, running and ducking under tables
Those wounded by gunfire included four Asian men, aged 66, 75, 82 and 92, and an 86-year-old Asian woman, the sheriff’s department said.
Two of the victims are a man and woman. Four are in critical condition.
Authorities say those involved ‘showed exceptional heroism and courage in apprehending the suspect.’
‘That group of churchgoers showed what we believe is exceptional heroism and courage in intervening to stop the suspect. They inevitably prevented additional injuries and deaths, ‘said Orange County Undersheriff Jeff Hallock.
“I think it’s safe to say that if people had not intervened, it could have been much worse.”
Two rifles were found near the shooter and were quickly removed.
Two of the victims were taken to Providence Mission Hospital, the medical center confirmed.
Another victim was transported to UC Irvine Medical Center, and two more were transported to Orange County Global Medical Center, including a 92-year-old man who was grazed by a bullet.
The majority of those in the church were believed to be of Taiwanese descent and had gathered to honor a former pastor of the church with a lunch reception after Sunday morning service.
Deputies say the gunman, David Chou, was motivated by an ‘individual grievance’ against the Taiwanese people. Investigators said they did not believe the gunman lived in the community.
A file photo of what the church normally looks like, as pictured from their Facebook page
Churchgoers are seen as police investigating a shooting at Geneva Presbyterian Church in Laguna Woods. Many of those present were of Taiwanese descent
Investigators from the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives joined the law enforcement department of Orange County in their investigation.
Initial reports indicate that one person was killed and several others were seriously injured.
‘Please keep the leadership of the Taiwanese community and Geneva in your prayers, as they care for those traumatized by this shooting. In your mercy, O Lord, we pray, ‘read a statement from the diocese after the shooting.
The surrounding town of 18,000 consists of Laguna Woods Village, a large retirement community for people 55 and older formerly known as Leisure World. More than 80 percent of the city’s residents are at least 65 years old, according to demographic data.
Cynthia Conners, the mayor’s pro tem in Laguna Woods, said on Sunday that she is a member of the church and had attended services that morning. A Taiwanese group typically uses the church later in the morning.
“I could not even imagine that such a thing could happen here,” church organist Charlotte Hseih said in an interview with the New York Times. “I’m just as shocked as anyone.”
Chinese man, 68, opened fire at California church over ‘political tensions between China and Taiwan’ Source link Chinese man, 68, opened fire at California church over ‘political tensions between China and Taiwan’