Father kills three children, self in US church
A father killed himself and his three children in a US church on Monday.
According to officials, a father shot three of his own children before turning the pistol on himself in a US church yesterday, on Monday.
A fifth person was killed in the shooting in Sacramento, California, however, it was unclear whether that person was connected to the domestic altercation that the police described.
"The suspect in this case, who ended up killing himself, had a restraining order out against him by his estranged wife, the mother of the three children victims," Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones told NBC Bay Area.
The three children who died were all under the age of 15, according to the authorities. Three girls, aged 9, 10, and 13, were believed to be involved, according to local sources.
The children had gone to the Church of Sacramento in the Arden Arcade neighborhood of Sacramento for a supervised visit with their father, according to Jones.
Read more: Soaring US shootings kill 3, bystanders
Authorities believed the fifth victim, whose name was unknown at the time, was the person in charge of the visit, according to local media.
"At 5:07 this afternoon, we received a call that there was a shooting inside the church," Sergeant Rod Grassmann of Sacramento County Sheriff's Office told reporters.
"This is as far as I can see, at this point, a domestic violence-related sort of incident," he said.
Police have stated that they are not seeking anyone else who may have been involved in the shooting.
California Governor Gavin Newsom called the murders "senseless" in a Twitter posting.
"Another senseless act of gun violence in America –- this time in our backyard. In a church with kids inside," he said.
"Absolutely devastating. Our hearts go out to the victims, their families, and their communities."
In the United States, mass shootings using firearms are an all-too-common occurrence.
Attempts to reduce the number of firearms in circulation have been continually thwarted by lax gun laws and a fixation on the right to bear arms, despite the majority of Americans favoring tighter controls.