Louisiana Pastor Shot and Killed During Service

Motive a mystery as to why man walked into church and shot him

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A pastor in Louisiana was fatally shot in front of his congregation Friday night, local NBC affiliate KPLC reports.

Pastor Ronald J. Harris Sr. was preaching at the Tabernacle of Praise Worship Center in Lake Charles, in the southwestern corner of the state, when a man reportedly walked into the church and fired shots. Harris was declared dead at the scene.

The gunman has been identified as 53-year-old Woodrow Karey Jr. A spokesperson from the local sheriff’s office said Karey allegedly shot the pastor twice — once when he first walked in, and again, at a closer range, once Harris fell to the floor. Karey fled on foot but later called 911 and confessed, police said.

The investigation remains underway, and the motive remains unknown.