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Man kills 3 daughters, 1 other, himself at California church

  • ASSOCIATED PRESS
                                Law enforcement vehicles from several agencies block a street near the scene of a shooting in Sacramento, Calif., today.

    ASSOCIATED PRESS

    Law enforcement vehicles from several agencies block a street near the scene of a shooting in Sacramento, Calif., today.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. >> A man shot and killed his three daughters, their chaperone and himself during a supervised visit with the girls Monday at a church in Sacramento, California, authorities said.

Deputies responding to reports of gunfire around 5 p.m. found five people dead, including the shooter, at the church in the Arden-Arcade neighborhood, said Sgt. Rod Grassmann with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.

The victims included three girls ages 9, 10 and 13, Grassmann said.

The shooter was estranged from his daughters’ mother, who had a restraining order against him, Sheriff Scott Jones said.

Investigators believe the shooting happened during a supervised visit with the children and that the fourth victim was their chaperone, Jones said.

The shooter’s name wasn’t immediately released, but officials said he was 39 years old.

An employee of The Church In Sacramento heard the gunshots and called 911, Grassmann said.

Sheriff’s officials are investigating it as a domestic violence incident, he said.

Officials didn’t know if the family members belonged to the the church, which sits on a mostly residential block near a commercial area east of downtown Sacramento.

The Church In Sacramento caters to English, Chinese and Spanish worshippers, according to its website. No events for Monday were listed on its online calendar.

Gov. Gavin Newsom said his office was working with local law enforcement.

“Another senseless act of gun violence in America — this time in our backyard. In a church with kids inside. Absolutely devastating,” Newsom said on Twitter.

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