David Wenwei Chou Identified as Suspect in California Church Shooting

Authorities in California have identified the suspect in Sunday's mass shooting at a church as 68-year-old David Wenwei Chou of Las Vegas.

Chou is alleged to have shot several people at a church in Laguna Woods, California, on Sunday, killing one and injuring five others.

"The Laguna Woods church shooting investigation has continued through the night. Teams continue to process the scene," the Orange County Sheriff's Department said in a tweet on Monday.

"The suspect in the Laguna Woods church shooting has been identified as David Chou, 68 years old, of Las Vegas, NV. He has been booked on one felony count of murder and five felony counts of attempted murder. More info to follow at todays press conference," the sheriff's department said in a subsequent tweet.

California Shooting
Police identified 68-year-old David Chou as the suspected shooter that left one person dead and several others injured at a church in Laguna Woods, California. Above, police vehicles are parked near the scene of a shooting at the Geneva Presbyterian Church on May 15, 2022 in Laguna Woods, California. Mario Tama/Getty

The identification of Chou comes just one day after the sheriff's department reported the incident, which occurred during a luncheon at the Geneva Presbyterian Church.

According to the Orange County Sheriff's Department, deputies arrived on scene at around 1:26 p.m. local time and discovered one deceased victim and five others that were injured during the incident.

"They [deputies] immediately began lifesaving measures until paramedics with the Orange County Fire Authority arrived to provide advanced critical care. Five individuals were taken to local hospitals where they are being treated," the sheriff's department said in a statement on Sunday.

According to the sheriff's department, the five victims that were injured by gunfire were all Asian and their ages ranged from 66 to 92.

"The identity of the decedent will released pending official identification by the Coroner and notification next of kin," the sheriff's department said.

The Orange County Sheriff's Department also said that when deputies arrived, they found that congregants of the church were able to detain the suspected shooter "by tackling him then tying his legs with extension cords."

During a press conference on Sunday, Jeff Hallock, an undersheriff with the Orange County Sheriff's Department, said that churchgoers "hog-tied" the suspected shooter.

Authorities have yet to release any information on a possible motive for the shooting incident. Prior to identifying Chou as the suspected shooter, the Orange County Sheriff's Department said that the suspect was described as an "Asian man in his 60s."

"The man is not believed to live in the area and investigators are working to determine his city of residence and whether he has any connections to the church or its congregants," the statement said.

In a tweet following the incident, California Governor Gavin Newsom's office said, "We are actively monitoring the shooting at a church in Laguna Woods and working closely with local law enforcement."

The tweet continued, "No one should have to fear going to their place of worship. Our thoughts are with the victims, community, and all those impacted by this tragic event."

A day prior to the shooting incident in California, 18-year-old New York resident Payton Gendron carried out a mass shooting at a Tops Friendly Market in Buffalo, New York, leaving at least 10 dead.