GARDEN GROVE, Calif. – A gunman opened fire in the complex housing the world-famous Crystal Cathedral on Thursday, but no one was hit and children in a church day care center were rushed to safety, police said.
A police SWAT team quickly surrounded the gleaming glass-and-steel cathedral and its surrounding buildings, and police said the gunman, a disgruntled or depressed cathedral employee, was holed up inside an office. Everyone else on the cathedral grounds was believed to have been safely evacuated by Thursday night.
Police were talking by phone with the man they believed to be the shooter and hoped to persuade him to surrender, Lt. Mike Hanfield said.
“We’re just going to wait and see how things go,” Hanfield told The Associated Press. “He’s despondent. He’s talking about hurting himself.”
Police didn’t know what prompted the gunfire. The man, believed to be in his 50s, was not immediately identified. He was armed with a handgun.