VANCOUVER — A 25-year-old man is in custody following a shooting at a church in Salmon Arm, B.C. that left one dead and sent another to hospital on Sunday morning.
Salmon Arm RCMP say the attack happened during an event at the Church of Christ in the city about 100 kilometres north of Kelowna, and investigators do not believe it was religiously motivated.
They said a man entered the church at about 10:30 a.m. and allegedly shot two parishioners. One died at the scene, while the other was taken to hospital in stable condition.
Several parishioners wrestled the alleged shooter to the ground, said police, adding that officers seized a rifle.
Murray Mitchell/Canadian Press
David Parmenter told the Salmon Arm Observer that his dad, Gordon Parmenter, was killed as the intended target.
Relatives told media that the suspect is known to the family.
“Why he was focused on dad, I have no clue,” David told the Observer. “We’re just very sad, not so much angry because I know that the young guy, he’s got some real struggles.”
Salmon Arm Church of Christ
Gordon Parmenter and his wife lost their home in a suspicious fire last month.
According to the church’s website, Parmenter was from California and lived in Arizona before settling in Canada. With his wife, he had four children, “numerous grandchildren and a host of foster kids.”
Church member Marie Taylor told CBC News that volunteer elders help people from the both the church and lay community.
Police say charges against the suspect are pending, and there’s no reason to believe there’s a risk to public safety.
With files from HuffPost Canada