Entertainment And News

Mother Had Restraining Order Against Ex Before He Killed Their 3 Daughters During A Supervised Visit At Church

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crime scene tape

A man who shot and killed his three daughters, their chaperone, and himself during a supervised visit with the girls at a Church on Monday in Sacramento, California, had a restraining order filed against him by the girl's mother.

The shooter's name hasn't been revealed, but according to authorities he was 39 years old. 

Authorities had first responded to reports of gunfire around 5 p.m. at the church in the Arden-Arcade neighborhood after an employee called 911, according to Sergeant Rod Grassmann with the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office.

However, by the time police arrived at the scene, the shooting had ceased and authorities immediately found five people dead, including the gunman.

The three young victims were all between the ages 9, 10, and 13, according to Grassman. 

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The mother of the Sacremento church shooting victims was not present at the time.

The father had been estranged from his daughters' mother, who had an existing restraining order against him. The mother, who had not been in Sacramento at the time of the shooting, was alerted by police of the incident, according to the Los Angeles Times.

"The mom — I don’t know how you process it,” Grassman said.

The fifth person who had been shot had been identified as a man who was supervising the visit between the father and his three daughters. Though it was not clear what that person’s relationship was to the church or to the family.

It was also not clear whether the man and his children were members of the church or using the building as a neutral meeting location, but it is inferred that the visit was likely court-ordered.

Investigators are actively looking into the cause of the shooting as a domestic violence incident, according to Grossman.

Michael Baginski, who was described as a district leader on the church’s website, as reported by the LA Times, told the news outlet that the shooter was most likely mentally ill.

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Baginski had no been at the scene during the incident and said the church was not holding services at the time of the shooting.

Gov. Gavin Newson released a statement, saying that his office has been 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 tweeted. “Our hearts go out to the victims, their families and their communities.”

Just last month, Newsom backed a new bill in California hat would let private citizens enforce the state's ban on assault weapons. The bill had been modeled after a Texas law that lets private citizens enforce that state's ban on abortions once a fetal heartbeat is detected.

"If Texas can use a law to ban a woman's right to choose and to put her health at risk, we will use that same law to save lives and improve the health and safety of the people in the state of California," Newsom said during a news conference.

Rep. Doris Matsui, whose district includes the church, also tweeted out: “Tonight’s senseless shooting is a tragedy beyond words. My prayers are with the victims’ family, loved ones and the entire Sacramento community."

“In memory of all those we have lost, we must renew our resolve to build a world free from gun violence.”

If you or someone you know is a domestic violence survivor, please reach out for help. You never deserved the abuse you faced — you deserve love, peace, and happiness.

Please call the National Domestic Abuse Hotline any time of day at 1−800−799−7233.

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Nia Tipton is a writer living in Brooklyn. She covers pop culture, social justice issues, and trending topics. Follow her on Instagram.