Researchers submit just down the street from the Church of Scientology after a shooting injured two police officers killed with a sword-wielding suspect in Inglewood, Calif., on Wednesday. (Associated Press)
Two California police officers were injured and a suspect was killed during a shootout Wednesday after police responded to reports of a masked man with a sword that the Church of Scientology of Inglewood, authorities said.
The suspect, who is not immediately identified, was shot in the head and later died in a hospital, Inglewood police Lt. Oscar Mejia told reporters at the scene.
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One agent was hit in a hand, and the other was hit in an arm, the officials said. The officers, both in their late 20s, were hospitalized in good condition with non-life-threatening injuries, police Chief Mark Fronterotta said.
The police are outside, and researchers working in the entrance of the Church of Scientology in Inglewood, California., on Wednesday. (Associated Press)
The shootout unfolded around 3:30 a.m. local time in the front entrance of the church. Gunfire broke out when police approached a man wearing a hood and wielding a sword.
Officials will not say who fired first, a gun was removed from the suspect.
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Witnesses told the Los Angeles Times that a heavy presence of the police in different blocks followed the recordings, but apart from hearing the pop of a shot, they were uncertain about what happened in the church.
An unknown man in the building is shaking officers’ hands outside of the Church of Scientology in Inglewood, California., on Wednesday. (Associated Press)
“The police do not play around all of them are here,” 52-year-old Ron Sigur told the newspaper. “This is my city, I live in Inglewood. I want to know what happened.”
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Officials believe the suspect acted alone, but were still trying to determine a motive, FOX11 Los Angeles reported. The suspect is white colored Bentley was found parked near the church and looks for evidence. The officials will not immediately release further details.
The Church of Scientology released a statement, thanking the police and offering its full support to the authorities during the investigation.
“We would like to thank the Inglewood Police Department for their quick response in protecting our members and employees,” reads the statement obtained by FOX11. “These officials are doing a heroic job protecting the community and keeping houses of worship safe from hate crimes.”
Inglewood is a city of about 100,000 inhabitants, about 10 miles southwest of downtown Los Angeles.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.