A Detroit pastor shot a man who threatened him with a brick and has been brought in for questioning. The brick-wielding man attacked the pastor as the service was ending, following which the pastor shot and killed the man.
Detroit Police Sgt. Cassandra Lewis says the man arrived at the City of God Church shortly before 2 p.m., as reported by CBS Detroit. Just as the church session was ending, the man threatened the pastor with a brick, Lewis says. He further said that the victim had an issue with the pastor in the past. Assistant Chief, Steve Dolunt, said, “The pastor had had issues with the man before. He had been threatening him to do bodily harm. He walked into the service and went after the pastor with a brick. The pastor pulled out his Glock and fired several shots. I think he hit him 4 or 5 times, and the man died.”
The shooting is still under investigation, police said. “We’re not sure at this point whether the man had mental problems or what,” Dolunt said.
The shooting comes a few months after the heinous church shooting in Charleston, South Carolina. In June, a white supremacist shot nine people dead after he unleashed a deadly attack at Charleston’s Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church. Following the massacre, Detroit pastors said that they were planning to strengthen security at churches.
City Councilman Andre Spivey, pastor of St. Paul A.M.E. Church on Detroit’s east side, said that he had beefed up security at the church, as reported by The Detroit News. “The reality is, things can happen anywhere now,” he said. “(Church) is a haven of rest and safety … when you cannot be safe in God’s place of worship, where can you be safe?”
The Rev. Larry L. Simmons, of Baber Memorial A.M.E. Church in northwest Detroit, said it is difficult to put a place that is open for public under security. “Unfortunately, we had an incident about a year ago at another church in Brightmoor,” Simmons said, referring to a July incident outside the Citadel of Praise Church wherein a church security guard shot a man who was carrying an axe. The man was later found out to be mentally impaired. “That incident alerted us that our security was not right,” Simmons said. “But how do you make a place that’s open to the public completely secure? You can’t.”