An LA-area auxiliary bishop was recently found dead in his home with a gunshot wound to the chest. The LA County Sheriff’s Department said that the shooting happened around 1 pm on Saturday and that the victim, later identified as auxiliary bishop of LA Archdiocese David O’Connell, was pronounced dead shortly after being found. CBS News, reporting on that tragic situation, reported that:
A high-ranking local Catholic church official was fatally shot on Saturday in Hacienda Heights.
According to a statement from Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department, the shooting happened at around 1 p.m. in the 1500 block of Janlu Avenue.
When deputies arrived to the scene, they found a man suffering from a gunshot wound to the chest. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
Deputies identified the victim has been identified as David O’Connell, the Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles. An Ireland native, O’Connell was 69 years old. He was named to the position by Pope Francis in 2015.
Later, the LA County Sheriff’s Department decided that the case should be investigated as a murder. That was first reported by ABC News correspondent Alex Stone, who said “Los Angeles County Sheriff’s investigators now believe the death of auxiliary bishop of LA Archdiocese David O’Connell to be murder. Suicide was ruled out overnight after O’Connell was found dead after a medical emergency call on Saturday afternoon in a home.”
The Archbishop of Los Angeles, José H. Gomez, spoke on the passing of Bishop O’Connell in a statement released on Saturday, saying:
“I am very sad this afternoon to report that our beloved Auxiliary Bishop David O’Connell has passed away unexpectedly. It is a shock and I have no words to express my sadness.”
“As a priest and later a bishop here in Los Angeles for forty-five years, Bishop Dave was a man of deep prayer who had a great love for Our Blessed Mother. He was a peacemaker with a heart for the poor and the immigrant, and he had a passion for building a community where the sanctity and dignity of every human life was honored and protected.”
The Daily Wire, reporting on Bishop O’Connell’s career and background, reported that:
According to Angelus News, O’Connell attended seminary at All Hallows College in Dublin. Then-Father O’Connell became a prominent figure in Los Angeles during the 1992 riots, when he was serving as pastor of St. Frances X. Cabrini. O’Connell aided community recovery efforts and served as a mediator between South L.A. residents and the police.
O’Connell was named Auxiliary Bishop of Los Angeles by Pope Francis in 2015. He served as chairman of the interdiocesan Southern California Immigration Task Force, which helped respond to an influx of immigration from Central America in recent years. He was also chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Subcommittee on the Catholic Campaign for Human Development.
By: Will Tanner. Follow me on Twitter @Will_Tanner_1
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